2020 Strategic Research Plan

Great Minds, Greater Discoveries

The University of Michigan Medical School’s strategic research plan, “Great Minds, Greater Discoveries,” is focused largely on our people, who remain our greatest resource.

The ultimate objective of this initiative is to increase faculty’s competitiveness and their ability to pursue major scientific questions in a rich and diverse environment that leads to discoveries that inspire new preventions, treatments, and cures.

The blueprint of this plan includes five strategies:


The University of Michigan Medical School will be the destination for world-class research faculty, learners, and staff with active development across all stages of their careers. Tactics including:

  • Recognize and value existing faculty conducting research.
  • Develop programs to support each career stage to ensure faculty thrive professionally.
  • Recruit world class faculty, learners, and staff.


An integrated research ecosystem will foster collaborations across disciplines, the University, external partners, stakeholders, and communities. Tactics including:

  • Provide large-scale grant support.
  • Identify areas where the power and synergy of the University can be brought to bear to advance science and health.
  • Partner with U-M Office of Research to release M-Cubed Communities.
  • Launch Michigan Cores website.
  • Expand Michigan Research Experts to include all schools and colleges.

Bold Science

Our pioneering research will enable innovative, high-risk, and transformative biomedical discoveries. Tactics including:

bold science
  • Identify research areas where Michigan Medicine has strength, critical mass, and differentiation where we are poised to lead globally.
  • Complement conventional research by creating a dedicated component of funding for daring, radical research.



Clinical Research

The U-M clinical research enterprise will be best in class, executing investigations of the highest quality and impact that improve clinical care, value, access, and outcomes. Tactics including:

clinical research
  • Improve efficiency of activating high-quality clinical trials.
  • Build capabilities to become lead site of multi-site clinical trials.
  • Expand clinical research to ambulatory clinics and Michigan Medicine strategic community hospital affiliates.


Our vibrant research environment will facilitate scientific excellence through cutting-edge infrastructure and expert services. Tactics including:

  • Create a robust research IT system, providing resources and services that enable cutting-edge research and big data.
  • Modernize research space to increase collaboration.
  • Offer state-of-the-art technologies and world-class expertise through centralized cores and services.

"With great minds achieving greater discoveries, we will create transformative knowledge
that advances science and improves health."Steven Kunkel, Ph.D.


Steven L. Kunkel, Ph.D.
Executive Vice Dean for Research, Medical School
Chief Scientific Officer, Michigan Medicine
Peter A. Ward Distinguished University Professor
Endowed Professor of Pathology Research



CLICK HERE to view Dr. Kunkel's slide presentation from the "Great Minds, Greater Discoveries" kickoff in February 2020.



Contact us at 734-615-1332 / (Fax 734-615-9458)

2800 Plymouth Road, Building 520, 3rd Floor, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2800

Contact the Medical School Office of Research at ummsresearch@umich.edu.