Announcement of New WashU IT Services Organization for Researchers

Dr. Susan Dutcher, acting Director of the McDonnell Genome Institute (MGI), Dr. Jenny Lodge, Vice Chancellor for Research, and John Gohsman, Vice Chancellor for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer are pleased to announce the formation of an IT services organization that focuses on providing IT infrastructure and services to the university’s research community. The new Research Infrastructure Services (RIS) organization will complement and support services from the Institute for Informatics, led by Dr. Philip Payne, and build Washington University’s common research IT service capabilities.  RIS will continue to provide services to MGI while leveraging the infrastructure and team expertise to expand services to the rest of the university.  Additional investments by the university and faculty, like the WashU Research Network (WURN), storage for researchers and cloud provider arrangements, will provide new services to support our researchers and improve their ability to compete for grants.

In June of 2015, the Office of the CIO (OCIO) announced the new Washington University Information Technology (IT) organization. The announcement was the culmination of months of work unifying the former Information Services and Technology (IS&T), Central Information Technology Services (CITS) and the Department of Medicine IT organizations into one.  WashU IT currently offers over 30 services spanning enterprise applications, infrastructure and user support.

In July 2017, the highly skilled and experienced 21 member McDonnell Genome Institute IT staff will transition to WashU IT as part of the new Research Infrastructure Services (RIS) organization reporting to the CIO.  Craig Pohl, Senior Director of Research Infrastructure Services, will lead the new organization and report to John Gohsman. This gives RIS a strong start with management, technical and engineering staff with deep experience with research.  RIS will provide core infrastructure and services to support the Institute for Informatics as well as common services needed across the research community. The university’s plan is for RIS to continue to grow in skills and services providing a competitive advantage to WashU researchers.

The creation of the RIS organization is a component of the IT Research Infrastructure Services (IRIS) Program.  The multi-year IRIS Program includes a portfolio of IT projects focused on creating shared research IT services that include network, storage, compute, cloud services, IT engineering, support, IT infrastructure and other services.  An example of those projects are the WashU Research Network (WURN) and the Research Storage Project providing data storage for all researchers.

RIS solutions will provide Washington University’s researchers with advanced IT as a service. By using RIS for IT, the researcher can focus on their research, instead of the acquisition and support of IT and management of IT staff.  Researchers may engage RIS to evaluate their IT needs, design and develop a solution, and provide that solution as a fully supported service.

More announcements will be forthcoming as our capabilities and services grow.



John Gohsman

Vice Chancellor & CIO

Washington University Information Technology

Jenny Lodge

Vice Chancellor of Research

Washington University School of Medicine