Following its mandate to undergo strategic planning process on a regular seven-year schedule, the Board of Regents has approved four strategic plans to guide its operations for higher education: in 1988, 1993, 1999, and 2007. The first plan evolved from a carefully researched “White Paper” prepared in 1987 by the Louisiana Stimulus for Excellence in Research (LaSER) Committee. The 1993 plan maintained the central themes and strategies of the 1987-92 period, while making modifications and adjustments based on seven years of experience. After thirteen years that encompassed significant changes in the government, economy and some areas of academia, the 1999 plan continued the approach of balancing continuity based on effectiveness, with revisions reflecting “lessons learned.” Through the 2007 plan, the Support Fund, as directed by the Louisiana Constitution, continues to support educational and research programs related to economic development, particularly in the wake of the disruptions and opportunities created by the hurricanes of 2005.
In 2007, the Board of Regents contracted with Regional Technology Strategies, Inc., to develop a strategic plan related to statewide development of university-based research commercialization and technology transfer efforts. Based on a careful study of existing and potential strengths in post-secondary institutions as well as Louisiana’s private sector, the strategic plan identifies disciplines and areas of focus for targeted investment. Further, RTS recommended a public-private alliance, modeled on the Georgia Research Alliance, to provide incentive for university-based research commercialization.