Skip to content Skip to navigation

Introduction to Office of Research & Tech Transfer

The Office of Research & Tech Transfer (ORTT) is the institutional office overseeing and supporting a variety of research-related matters at the University level. ORTT works with the various SMU Schools, Institutes, Centres and Labs (ICLs), and other University administration offices such as the Office of Finance (OFN), and the Office of Legal and General Affairs (OLGA) to provide support to researchers across the research project life cycle in the following areas:

ORTT works with faculty, Schools, ICLs and senior management to shape, articulate and implement university-wide research strategies to create research impact. ORTT is also responsible for research grants related performance analysis and the reporting to both internal and external stakeholders. ORTT thus plays a key role to facilitate and support the delivery of SMU’s research objectives.

ORTT disseminates information on available funding opportunities to the SMU research community, facilitates grant application submissions, and provides advice at each stage of the grant life cycle.

During the pre-award stage, ORTT provides details of major funding opportunities, and offers advice and support to faculty members and researchers who are interested to apply for research grants. Grant applications should be submitted to ORTT for verification and endorsement prior to submission to funding agencies. ORTT assists the Schools, ICLs and faculty members to review research proposals so as to ensure the grant applications meet the funding agencies’ requirements. 

During the post-award stage, ORTT assists the Schools, ICLs and faculty members in the submission of grant variations, progress reports or project closure, where required. This includes advice on justifications for grant variations, and checks for consistency for the reports that need to be submitted to the funding agencies through ORTT.

ORTT acts as a liaison for research funding agencies and research partners in the government, private and non-profit sectors, and serves as the point of contact with key funding agencies in Singapore such as Ministry of Education (MOE)National Research Foundation (NRF), and Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).

ORTT also administers the SMU Internal Research Grant Call every year. These grant calls tap on the MOE Tier 1 Academic Research Funding (AcRF) to fund projects awarded. ORTT provides MOE with an update of the projects awarded through the grants calls, as well as the achievements of these projects annually.

For more details, please see the ORTT Grants intranet site (SMU users only).

ORTT is the liaison between SMU, and research funding agencies and research partners on research funding schemes and other research agreements. Together with OLGA, OFN, Schools, ICLs and faculty, ORTT reviews and negotiates the terms and conditions of these agreements for alignment with SMU’s interests.

ORTT provides support for Intellectual Property (IP) management and technology transfer arising from SMU’s research, education and administrative work.

We work with SMU OLGA to formulate university-wide policies related to IP management and technology transfer. We also work closely with Schools, ICLs, and the broader SMU community to help identify and manage various forms of IP that are created across the university, file patents for IP that warrants such protection, and motivate and facilitate technology transfer when appropriate.

Faculty or staff should contact ORTT for the following:

  1. To file an Innovation Disclosure to determine the need to protect the IP; or
  2. To discuss potential licensing for past or on-going research work

For more details, please see the ORTT Intellectual Property Management & Technology Transfer intranet site (SMU users only).

The mission of the SMU Institutional Review Board (IRB) is to protect the rights, privacy, and welfare of human participants in research. To accomplish this mission, the SMU IRB performs the primary functions of review, approval, and disapproval of research proposals involving human participants, with the aim that all research conducted by SMU faculty, students, and staff adheres to best practices for the protection of human participants in research. To fulfil its mission, the SMU IRB also reaches out to the SMU community and keeps them informed on best practices for the protection of human participants in research.

  • Human Participant means a living individual about whom an investigator (whether professional or student) conducting research obtains (1) data through intervention or interaction with the individual, or (2) identifiable private information.
  • Research means a systematic investigation including research development, testing and evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable knowledge.

For SMU Community

If you wish to submit an IRB application, please login to the IRB intranet and download the submission forms.

Please contact the SMU IRB Secretariat at or +65 6828 1925 if you wish to find out more information about the SMU IRB or have questions for them.

For Research Participants

SMU’s vision is to be a premier university, internationally recognised for its world-class research and distinguished teaching. Established in 2000, SMU’s mission is to generate leading-edge research with global impact and produce broad-based, creative and entrepreneurial leaders for the knowledge-based economy. A large proportion of the research conducted by SMU faculty, staff, and students involves the collection of data from human participants, for example via surveys, interviews, focus groups, and laboratory studies. This research contributes to scientific knowledge and practical applications in a wide range of disciplines such as psychology, sociology, political science, organisational behaviour, strategy, marketing, accounting and law, information systems, and economics.

SMU researchers conducting human participant research will ensure that every research participant in a given study has a channel for contacting and providing feedback to both the research team and the SMU IRB. To this end, the SMU IRB requires that the research team provide each participant with the IRB approval number, and the contact details (e.g., telephone number; e-mail address) of the Principal Investigator and the IRB Secretariat. Such information will be provided either before, during, or immediately after the initial research session with each participant, and will be provided by way of an informed consent form, information sheet, debriefing form to be left with the participant, or other means as appropriate.

Please therefore contact the SMU IRB Secretariat at or +65 6828 1925 if:

  • You wish to find out more information about the SMU IRB; or
  • You have questions on your rights as a research participant.

If you have questions pertaining to a study’s administrative issues (e.g., how to complete a survey or receive compensation), please contact the Principal Investigator (PI).

Apart from risks to the rights, privacy, and welfare of human participants in research, there could also be other non-IRB risks related to research. ORTT works with OLGA, Schools, ICLs and senior management to review such non-IRB risks that are surfaced to ORTT. 

ORTT aims to raise awareness of research conducted by SMU, and also promote research collaborations both within SMU and with external partners. One key approach is through the Research@SMU e-newsletter published by ORTT, which highlights research by Schools and ICLs.


Last updated on 27 Jul 2017 .