NORDP Membership Guide

Get Started with NORDP

“The mission of NORDP is to advance the global capacity for and impact of research by strengthening the practice and profession of research development.” To learn more about the value of NORDP membership, our first piece of advice is to keep reading! Once you understand what NORDP is about, we're confident you'll be eager to join us.

What is NORDP's mission? How is it organized?
Regional Connections
Specialty Groups/Support Groups
Research Development Jobs/Career Resources
Professional Opportunities & Resources
DEI Initiatives
Managing your Membership

What is NORDP's mission? How is it organized?

The mission of the National Organization of Research Development Professionals (NORDP) is to advance the global capacity for and impact of research by strengthening the practice and profession of research development. Founded in 2011, NORDP is an international leader in defining and growing research development, both as a profession and a critical element of the research mission at institutions across the U.S. and beyond. It is the only organization exclusively devoted to research development professionals and their needs. As a member-driven, organization, NORDP is also organized and operates as a nonprofit in accordance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

NORDP is governed by a member-elected Board of Directors who set broad priorities and policies. Our all-volunteer organization is composed of multiple committees that carry out the work of the organization for the professional benefit of all its members. Members elect the board during at annual elections held in May. NORDP's deeply engaged and wildly collegial members perform most of the work of the organization, which includes: a highly popular annual conference; an extremely informative listserv; robust and active committees devoted to member services; professional development; strategic alliances; inclusive excellence; advancing research development; task forces and initiatives, and much more. (More about all of this work below.)

Regional Connections

While some of NORDP’s seven regions are more active than others (holding regular regional meetings and with elected leadership positions), they all have the ability to connect you to colleagues in your area with whom you can forge inter-institutional research partnerships and exchanges. For general questions about being a NORDP member (resources, membership renewal, listserv access), talk to your regional membership representative


The RD listserv is perhaps the most popular NORDP offering, but it's strictly limited to members so we can't share it here. Still, imagine having hundreds of the nation’s most experienced and collegial research development professionals at your fingertips! From proposal formatting questions to behind the scenes knowledge of competitive opportunities to job openings, all manner of inquiries come to these message boards daily. 


Each Spring in late April or early May, NORDP holds a national conference that includes presentations, poster sessions, sponsor booths, workshops, networking dinners, and more! To learn more about the next NORDP conference and how to get involved, look online

  • The 2022 Conference will take place April 24 - 27, 2022 in Bellevue (Seattle), Washington. Additional information will be posted online when it becomes available. The Call for Abstracts is usually launched in the Fall and registration typically opens in February or March.
  • Registration for the 2021 Virtual Conference, featuring more than 70 hours of recorded content, is still available here. Because this conference was virtual, there are nearly 50 hours of recorded content, slides and other materials available for you to access after registration.
  • Materials from previous conferences (2012 -2020) are available in the NORDP LMS... but access is limited to members. These materials provide a wealth of information spanning nearly ten years of research development conferencing..

Affinity Groups and Other Specialty Support Groups

NORDP maintains two formal thematic Affinity Groups intended to provide additional professional development support, resources, and community to members from specific institutional contexts:

  • The Affiliated Medical Centers (AMC) Affinity Group provides support to RD professionals working with biomedical researchers, clinician-researchers, and clinician-educators in an academic medicine or affiliated medical center setting. The AMC hosts monthly meetings to share ideas via informal conversations and formal presentations, and maintains an active Circle on the NORDP website. Any RD professional who is interested in or currently works within an academic medicine or affiliated medical center is eligible to become a member. 
  • The Predominantly Undergraduate Institutions (PUI) Affinity Group (‘PUI NORDP’) provides support to RD professionals working within predominantly undergraduate and other teaching-intensive and/or small institutional settings. PUI NORDP maintains active monthly meetings in which members share experiences and approaches to challenges and opportunities within their institutions. The group also pursues key initiatives intended to advance RD within PUI and other teaching-intensive and small institutional settings. Any RD professional working within a relevant context, or who is interested in support RD at PUIs and other institutions facing similar challenges is welcome to join! 
In addition, NORDP offers a robust community of “Circles” created and maintained by and for NORDP members to provide professional development support and opportunities to connect with colleagues around specific topics within RD. If you can dream it, there is likely a Circle for it, and if not, you can create one! Circles function differently, with some serving as a discussion post of sorts and others hosting regular meet-ups and other activities. Circles are located within the Members Only area of the NORDP website.


NORDP has various committees with which you can get involved--whether you are interested in mentoring, professional development, or conference planning. New members are always welcome!

  • Committee on Inclusive Excellence
  • Member Services Committee
  • Mentoring Committee
  • New Opportunities for Research Development
  • Nominating Committee
  • NORDP's Nominating Committee
  • Professional Development Committee
  • Strategic Alliances

Research Development Jobs/Career Resources

NORDP offers its members a variety of resources to build their careers.

  • NORDP Job Board: the NORDP job board is a free service provided to advance the emerging role of Research Development professionals within academia and in other organizations. Look here for recent position vacancies in RD.
  • RD Jobs Library: available to members, this Google folder is a collection of hundreds of RD position descriptions--most are not currently accepting applications, but you can look back at job descriptions from specific universities, for specific titles, etc. depending on what you are interested in. You can use this information to help evaluate new positions; write position descriptions for which you will soon be hiring; to justify a request for a promotion; or to discover the tasks and scope of colleagues employed in similar positions nationwide.
  • NORDP Salary Survey: The 2020 NORDP salary survey, available exclusively to members, reflects a snapshot of salaries across the research development (RD) profession. The confidential online survey was administered to all NORDP members using a Qualtrics survey instrument in late 2019; the 2020 survey updates and expands on the 2012 and 2015 NORDP salary surveys.

Professional Opportunities & Resources

  • Resources: NORDP offers a robust Resources page, featuring books, a directory of grant writers, articles, Team Science & collaborative research resources, guidance on finding funding, Career Profiles, and much more.
  • Funding Opportunities: NORDP maintains a list of research grant mechanisms, types, and programs representing collaborative, cross-disciplinary and team-based funding opportunities
  • The NORD / InfoReady Research Grants in Research Development Program funds projects that support the field of Research Development.
  • The N-Road to RD, on the NORDP LMS, was developed to provide a framework for RD offices seeking to develop their own training program to introduce RD to people interested in a career in research development.
  • RD101: Introduction to Research Development is a 12.5-hour course (not including readings and other coursework) that presents a framework for understanding who RD professionals are, the skills that make them effective in their roles, the hows and whys of what they do, and the resources they rely on. This course is intended for new or prospective RD professionals and is currently conducted virtually. watch for announcements regarding upcoming dates.
  • NORDP LEAD (Leadership, Engagement and Development) was established to help create pathways for member engagement, service, and leadership across all levels of NORDP and the research development profession. The program is intentionally designed for all members of NORDP to participate.
  • Webinar Archives: NORDP has archived webinars in two places. Webinars that took place between February 2018 and July 2020 can be found by members in the Members Only area of the website. Webinars that took place after July 2020 and other resources located on the NORDP LMS. These archives provide sorted, recorded webinars that you can watch anytime, with titles like “Helping Faculty Communicate the Value & Impact of Research” and “What You Need to Know About the NIGMS MIRA (R35) Program.” You'll also find content from previous conferences here - although not everything is available publicly.
  • NORDP Member Awards: as the original professional association dedicated to advancing the global capacity for and impact of research by strengthening the practice and profession of research development, NORDP is powered by the excellence and impact of its members. The NORDP Awards celebrate the outstanding accomplishments of 1) members making exemplary contributions to the organization, the profession, or the field and 2) external supporters of NORDP’s mission and the work of its members.
  • The NORDP Mentoring Program matches interested NORDP Mentees with Mentors once a year. This program, which kicks off annually on July 1, enables research development professionals to network with NORDP colleagues who have volunteered to share their expertise, guidance, and support. 
  • Peer Mentoring Groups (PMGs) are also offered for those interested in developing peer mentoring relationships with NORDP members at many professional development levels, who have similar interests and share resources, provide feedback, and act as accountability partners in building skills. T
  • The Mentoring Toolkit provides resources for starting and sustaining a successful mentoring relationship, such as an OnBoarding Packet, webinars, useful websites, articles and books. NORDP members can use these tools in their own professional relationships, and in their work with faculty and staff.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiatives

NORDP fosters a culture of inclusive excellence by actively promoting and supporting diversity, inclusion and equity in all its forms to expand our worldview, enrich our work, and elevate our profession.

The Committee on Inclusive Excellence (CIE) works to operationalize inclusive excellence within NORDP. This committee serves to advise NORDP leadership and committees toward creating and maintaining a welcoming and supportive environment for all NORDP members, partners, and affiliates. To ensure the integration of these values throughout NORDP, the CIE has representatives on all other NORDP committees.

Your Membership

A basic profile is generated for each NORDP member when they join the organization. Once you join, you'll find profiles are a great tool for finding colleagues at specific institutions, from specific states, or with similar job titles as you to answer a question you may have or just to network. Not only can you find others, people can find you.

Now that you know more about NORDP, we encourage you to take the next step and join. New member dues are only $219 for the first year, and $189 for annual renewals thereafter. Trainee members are also welcome and cost $95. To qualify as a Trainee Member, individuals must, at the time of NORDP membership application, 1) have not held a paid Research Development (RD) position, 2) be enrolled in a graduate educational program (for example a Master's or Doctoral program) or hold a postdoctoral fellowship, and 3) be interested in pursuing RD as a career. Proof of eligibility must be submitted with your application and annual renewal. Click here for more information.

If you need help or assistance with any NORDP questions, please contact any of the following: