Method to Request New or Renewed Southern Extension and Research Activity

Southern Extension and Research Activities (SERA) are intended to bring together researchers and extension specialists sharing a common problem, issue, or disciplinary interest. The general objective is to provide a functionally integrated forum to coordinate joint activities to address stakeholder needs.

  • Proposals for new or renewed SERA may be made by a group of research and extension faculty or by an experiment station and/or extension director. A new SERA proposed by a group of faculty will be co-sponsored by an experiment station and/or extension director. Proposals for renewing an existing SERA may be co-sponsored by their Administrative Advisors (AA).
  • SERA proposals are submitted via the National Information Management Support System (NIMSS, go to ) using Appendix B to the SAAESD Executive Director, who notifies the Executive Director of the Association of Southern Region Extension Directors (ASRED).
  • Proposals are reviewed by two or more Advisory Committees and by the joint SERA Review Committee, who makes a recommendation to the SAAESD and ASRED Executive Directors.
  • The SERA proposal and Review Committee recommendation is considered by the SAAESD and ASRED directors separately at their Fall meetings. If approval by one of the associations (ASRED or SAAESD) is not granted, the activity may be considered for another type of activity.Components of the Proposal for a New or Renewed SERA:
    The request should include a brief proposal in outline format as indicated below (Appendix B), not to exceed three pages (single sided, single spaced) in length. It should clearly reflect the proposed activity with sufficient detail and precision to allow for quality decisions on the part of the two Associations. The proposal may be prepared in Word Perfect, MS Word, or as a Text file and copied into the web submission form. The following components are to be included in the proposal:

I. Title:

A brief, clear, specific statement of the subject of the planned activity. This should not exceed 140 letters and spaces. Do not use terms such as Research on…, or Studies of…, or Investigation of….

II. Statement of Issue(s) and Justification:

Include a brief statement of (1) the nature and significance of the issue(s) for which the SCC is proposed, and (2) how the proposed activity addresses national and/or regional priorities. (Limit this section to approximately one-half page). In this statement identify the sets of stakeholders, customers, and/or consumers for whom the activity is intended.

III. Objectives:

Give clear and succinct statements that describe what is to be done, against which the progress of the proposed activity can be measured. Objectives for SCCs need to emphasize coordination of activities and the exchange of information. They must not be generalized objectives, but rather they should be very specific. They will probably not be traditional research objectives.

IV.Expected Outcomes and Impacts:

Briefly discuss the expected outcomes and the impacts of the proposed activity. Examples of possible outcomes include, but are not limited to:

  • Coordination of specific research and extension programs.
  • Exchange of ideas and/or information/data.
  • Generate interest in a specific research and extension area (e.g., a symposium or workshop).
  • Publication of research articles and/or review articles on a common issue.
  • Evaluation and standardization of methods or techniques leading to the development of a common protocol.
  • Identification of critical/key research and education issues.
V. Internal and External Linkages:
It is preferred that a completed table of participants utilizing the format in Appendix E be included with the proposal. It is important to document the extent of participation in the proposed activity to show integration across functions, disciplines, institutional, and/or states. Names of participants, their employing institution, his or her scientific discipline, and the type of appointment (research, extension, joint research and extension, etc.) should be included.
Because no official personnel resource commitment of SY, PY, or TY is required for participation in an SCC, the experiment station director is not required to complete and approve an Appendix E form, although they may do so if desired. If Appendix E is not used for all participants, this information should be included as an attachment to the proposal in Appendix B.
VI. Educational Plan:
Briefly describe how any appropriate stakeholder groups will be informed about the activities of this SCC. If applicable, include descriptions concerning equality for service, ease of access to services/information, and any focus on under-served and/or under represented communities/ consumers that may benefit from this proposed activity and what the plans are for disseminating information to these and other groups.
VII. Governance:
If standard governance, please click on the link indicated in Appendix B. Otherwise, describe the processes that will be used for selecting leadership and for decision-making.
VIII. Attachments:
1. Procedural Plan – If any unique or noteworthy procedures will be used to address particular objectives, describe these procedures and include the document as an attachment to the proposal in this section of Appendix B.