Productivity and Communication

Research Dewey Decimal System: The Ultimate Guide to Organizing Your Filing System

What is the Dewey Decimal Classification System?

The Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) system is an organization tool that is continuously revised to keep pace with general knowledge. The system was conceived by Melvil Dewey in 1873 and was first published in 1876. The Decimal Classification introduced the concepts of relative location and relative index which allow new books to be added to a library in their appropriate location based on subject. This system makes it possible to find any book and to return it to its proper place on the library shelves.

Can it be adapted for Research Administration?

The concept of the Dewey Decimal Classification system can be applied to the information and knowledge management in Research Administration. By combining all the major areas of research into broad categories and then indexing relevant sub-categories, we can instantly classify and clean up every research file system in the world.

How to purge old files and move to the new system?

Using the file hierarchy listed below, you can develop both a hard-copy paper filing system and a mirrored electronic file system with the following 9 main folders and each of the corresponding 9 sub folders beneath. Once you’ve created the file folder system, you can begin to reorganize your existing files into these new folders. (Cleaning up the clutter as you go!)

Pull up the new file system on one side of your computer screen, and your old files on the other side. Move through your old files slowly and pull out each file and place it into the corresponding new folder. Once you’ve emptied an old file completely, you can delete the old folder.

Should we have a file naming scheme?

For individual files or documents, I like to have a distinct naming scheme to ensure that I can easily find what I need within my folders. For example, I like to use the following: DocumentType_TitleDescription_DateSaved (e.g., Budget_ZinkR01Application_01-01-2018; or Presentation_FacultyLunchLearn_05-01-2018.) Whatever naming scheme you decide, make sure to include the date the document was used/last saved in the name to avoid confusion with multiple revisions.

What does the Research Dewey Decimal System look like?

Here is what your file system should look like:


Research Administrator and General Management

101 Locations
Universities and Colleges
Independent Research Organizations
Medical Schools
Biomedical Institutions
102 Role of Research Administrator
Compliance manager
Resource Locator
Team Builder
103 Interdependency
Research Administrator
Principal Investigator
The Institution
Funding Agency
104 Human Resource Management
Employee/Labor Relations
Career Development/Training
Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity
105 Onboarding and Orientation
106 Function and Structure of Departments
107 Administration Recruitment
108 Performance Metrics
109 Information and Knowledge Management
Cultural Theory
Records Management


Types of Sponsors

201 Federal Government
202 State and Local Government
203 Private Foundations
204 Associations and Societies
205 Industry
206 International Sponsors
207 Department or Organizational Sponsorship
208 Agency Structure and Practice
209 Public Relations


Project Development and Administration

301 Information Sources to Find Funding
Primary Sources
Secondary Sources
Marketing and Dissemination of Information
Resource Documents, Application Materials, and Information
Funding sources
Cooperative arrangements
302 Modes of Support
Cooperative Agreements
Solicited vs. Unsolicited Opportunities
303 Electronic Research Administration
304 Proposal Development
Types of Proposals
Elements of a Proposal
Proposal Writing
Budget Preparation
Documentation to Meet Sponsor Requirements
Internal Proposal Processing
Negotiation Techniques
305 Administration of Awards
Agency Contact after Proposal Submission
Accepting the Award
Postaward Management
Expanded Authorities
Material Transfer Agreement
Reporting Requirements
Continuation Funding
Changes in Project Status
Award Instruments
Close Out
306 Ethics and Professionalism
Conflict of Interest
307 Bioethics
308 Human Subjects
309 Animal Care


Legal Requirements and Sponsor Interface

401 Regulations and Statutes
Overview of Regulatory and Legislative Process
402 Public Laws and US Code
Code of Federal Regulations
Executive Orders
Mandated Requirements
403 Governmental Relations
404 Federal Budget Process
Congressional Action
405 Grants Regulatory Framework
Statutory Requirements
Program Requirements
Administrative Requirements
406 OMB Circulars
Office of Management and Budget
Cost Principles
Administrative Requirements
407 Audits of Grants
408 Subcontracts and Subawards
Critical Clauses
409 Contracts and Procurement
Making Purchases with Grant Funds
Written Policies and Procedures
Basic Legal Concepts
Management of Contracts and Purchasing
Termination and Appeals


Intellectual Property

501 Patents
502 Copyrights
503 Licensing
504 Commercialization
505 Data
506 Proprietary Information
507 Trademarks
508 Registered Designs
509 Non-Disclosure Agreements



601 Contracts
Federal Procurement Agreements
Regulations Specific to Contracts
Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR)
602 Institutional Committees
Institutional Review Board
Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee
603 Human Subjects
604 Use of Animals
605 Investigational New Drug
606 Biosafety
607 Radiation
608 Hazardous
609 Chemical Safety



701 Conflict of Interest
702 Research Misconduct
Relevant Regulations
703 Office of Research Integrity (ORI)
Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
704 Publications
705 Data Access and Retention
706 Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR)
Federal Disclosure Requirements
707 Institutional and Sponsor Publication Requirements
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
Public Policies, Representations and Certifications
Individual Rights
Employee Directives
Lobbying Terms Defined
Fraud, Waste, and Abuse
Administrative Requirements
708 Terms and Conditions of Award
Federal Management Requirements
Grants Management Policies
709 Federal/Sponsor Appeal Procedures


Financial Management

Proposal Development
Accounting Management and Systems
Cost Accounting Standards
801 Sponsor documents
802 Internal documents
803 Effort reporting
804 Service centers
805 Program income
806 Internal controls
Cost transfers
807 Costs
Direct Costs
Cost Categories
Facilities and Administrative Costs
Cost Categories
Rate Determination
Types of Rates
Indirect Costs
Indirect Cost Rates
Cost Sharing
808 Sponsor Financial Reporting
Internal and External Requirements
809 Allowable Costs


Facility Management

901 Specialized Facilities
902 Property, Utility, and Equipment Management
Inventory control
Sale/disposal of equipment and property
Lease vs. purchase
Capital expenditures
903 Central services
904 Safety and Health Requirements and Procedures
905 Hazardous and Nonhazardous Materials
906 Security
907 Renovation and Construction -Differentiation & Impact analysis
908 Biohazards
909 Facilities and Administrative Costs

If you put the Research Dewey Decimal System to use at your workplace, let me know! I’d love to hear if you found it useful!

Article publié pour la première fois le 13/04/2018

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