Learning Through Research

CUR White Papers and Policy Documents Policy and Procedure

CUR White Paper and Official Statement Policy

May 17, 2016


In January 2006, a Policy and Procedure document outlining how CUR would handle White Papers and Policy Documents was developed to guide the organization for responding to requests for CUR endorsement of statements by external entities, and for issuance of statements originated within and representing the official interests of CUR. This is an update of that policy that reflects changes in the governance structure of CUR, and increases organizational nimbleness.


To fulfill its mission of supporting and promoting high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship, the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) must be a proactive and nimble advocate for undergraduate research. Opportunities to do so may originate from within CUR, or present themselves as opportunities to endorse positions and statements by other allied organizations. It is essential that CUR messaging be in compliance with the CUR mission, strategic pillars, and strategic plan. This policy outlines procedures and guidance for issuing policies or statements that are intended to represent CUR’s organizational stance.

Requests for CUR endorsement

Requests from other organizations range from signing a document that is already prepared to providing input during the development of statements. Signing on to these documents will convey that CUR as an organization supports the message and text contained in the document.
Many of the requests will be time-sensitive. CUR may be asked to sign onto letters to Congress, national agencies or departments, and other organizations (e.g., pending legislation, congratulatory messages, etc.). CUR may also be asked to provide input as legislation, policies, or programs are being developed. In such cases, the procedures below will ensure that the requests are carefully considered and receive a timely response.
  1. All requests for CUR institutional sign-on or input should be forwarded to the CUR Executive Officer.
  2. To be considered, requests should support the CUR mission, strategic plan, and/or strategic pillars.
  3. The Executive Officer will be guided by the CUR Partnerships Policy if applicable and will take action as appropriate. If the Executive Officer deems it is necessary, she/he will inform the President’s Group (President, President-Elect, and Immediate Past President) of particular requests before taking action.
  4. Requests may be forwarded to the appropriate governance structure in CUR (e.g., Executive Board or Advocacy Committee) for additional consideration as deemed appropriate by the Executive Officer and/or President’s Group.
  5. The Executive Officer will make the final determination concerning appropriate signatories or contributors to external requests.
  6. A record of CUR endorsements will be reported to the Executive Board at their regular meetings.

CUR Policy Statements

CUR pursues opportunities to develop policy statements that support or question policies and influence public opinion, or respond to press inquiries and external events. Policy statements include “white papers[1]” or briefer communications that focus on national regulatory or legislative issues, but may address other issues. CUR policy statements are normally initiated by the Executive Officer or Executive Board, but ideas may also come from the Councilors or members of the national office staff. The following procedure will apply to the issuance of CUR policy statements or white papers:
  1. Proposals for policy statements not originating with the Executive Officer or Executive Board should be first shared with the Executive Officer and President.
  2. The Executive Officer, in consultation with the President’s Group and if deemed necessary appropriate CUR governance groups, will make an initial determination to issue a policy statement. Commissioned products (e.g., “white papers”) that are not of a time-sensitive nature will be presented to the Executive Board for endorsement.
  3. The Executive Officer, in consultation with the President’s Group, will determine the contributors, timeline and procedure for promulgating the policy statement.
  4. The Executive Officer will ensure that any commissioned policy statement comports with other CUR policies such as the conflict-of-interest policy, and if appropriate, the CUR partnerships and/or sponsorships policy.
  5. The Executive Officer will oversee the completion of the commissioned product.
  6. A record of CUR policy statements will be reported to the Executive Board at their regular meetings.


Approved by the Executive Board on May 17, 2016; replaces policy of January 22, 2006