General Research Policies & Guidelines


The following research policies and guidelines pertain to all research conducted at the Science Museum of Minnesota's St. Croix Watershed Research Station (SCWRS). These policies and guidelines do not supersede or replace the general policies and guidelines of the Science Museum. The Science Museum reserves the right of final approval for the conduct of research on museum lands or within museum facilities.

Application to Conduct Research:

All researchers proposing to conduct research involving the use of the facilities and/or lands of the St. Croix Watershed Research Station must submit an application for research. No research may be initiated at SCWRS until a research proposal has been submitted and approved. The proposal must be prepared in the format presented in the SCWRS Research Proposal Application available from the Director, 16910 152nd Street North, Marine on St. Croix, Minnesota, 55047, (651) 433-5953. Applications must be received no later than 60 days prior to the proposed starting date of the study. Applications are normally reviewed quarterly.

Research Review and Approval:

All decisions concerning research priorities, research application approval/denial, awarding small grants (when available), reviewing research, and other research related items will be guided by the staff research committee of the St. Croix Watershed Research Station. The Science Museum of Minnesota reserves final review and approval of all research proposals and applications. All approved applications must be signed by the Research Station Director.


Fees will be charged for the use of facilities and lands to offset the cost of maintenance, utilities, insurance, etc. Unless other arrangements are made which allow for in-kind or other types of contributions, fees will be charged according to the attached schedule. This fee schedule will be reviewed annually by the research committee.


All researchers using the SCWRS will immediately contact the Director or his agent in the case of accident or injury resulting from the use of its lands, facilities, or equipment. All researchers using the SCWRS accept responsibility for the proper disposal of hazardous, nonhazardous, bio-hazardous, biological, and otherwise caustic or toxic waste that are products of their research. A waste disposal plan must accompany the research application. Researchers also accept the responsibility for acquiring all immunizations, pre- and post-field season disease testing (Lyme Disease), and all safety and equipment training and certification (i.e. SCUBA). All equipment must comply with OSHA and other pertinent health and safety regulations. A list of chemicals used for research at the SCWRS must accompany all proposals. The Science Museum reserves the right to reject the use of certain chemicals, agents, or equipment at the SCWRS. Unless otherwise approved as part of a specific research project, pets and firearms are not allowed on the SCWRS.


Since specific identifications may be important to future research, all research conducted on the SCWRS must be accompanied by the deposition of voucher specimens in appropriate museum collections. Priority will be given to maintenance of voucher specimens in SCWRS and SMM collections. Voucher specimens must be accompanied by all appropriate data including but not limited to location, date, collector, and name of person performing the identification. The specific research proposal should also be identified with each voucher specimen. If voucher specimens are not deposited in SMM collections they must be placed in a recognized public repository. The final research report must identify the number, species, and location (museum name and address) of the voucher specimens. All collecting on SCWRS lands is subject to museum approval via the specific research proposal and the maintenance of current federal, state, and local collecting permits. Researchers are responsible for obtaining permits. A tentative list of permitting organizations or agencies can be forwarded upon request.

Study Plots:

Before work is initiated, all research plots and study areas must be clearly marked on the appropriate SCWRS map and clearly delimited on site preferably with electrical thin-walled conduit tubing with 10 cm of the top color coded. Due to the possibility of vandalism, a steel stake or spike must be buried adjacent to the conduit plot marker for future reference. All habitat alteration or manipulation must be pre-approved and a statement describing manipulations must be added to the project file. This description must be updated if the site location or manipulation is altered. Any change of location must have prior approval by the Director. If any structures, fences, subsoil barriers, etc. are installed they will be removed at the end of the research at the expense of those responsible for the project.

Standards and Review:

Researchers granted space or funds will be required to provide an annual report of their progress for review by the research committee. This report shall follow a standard format, and will be due on the 15th of January of each year of the project. Researchers may also be invited to make an oral presentation to the committee. The museum, upon recommendation of the research station research committee, reserves the right to rescind research privileges.

Reporting and Publication:

A final report in the form of a project summary, thesis, or manuscript submitted for publication shall be provided to the SCWRS. We encourage publication of research conducted through the SCWRS in peer reviewed journals including the scientific publication series of the Science Museum of Minnesota. Three (3) reprints of all publications shall be submitted to the SCWRS for the library and permanent files. The Director may request copies of certain data which will then become part of the SCWRS database. All reports and publications must properly acknowledge the Science Museum of Minnesota, the St. Croix Watershed Research Station, and contributions of its personnel.

All questions concerning this statement of policy and guidelines should be addressed to:

St. Croix Watershed Research Station
16910 152nd Street North
Marine on St. Croix, Minnesota 55047
(651) 433-5953