Research universities typically have a variety of organizations, formal and informal, that are dedicated to research.
Organized Research Units (ORU). The phrase “organized research unit” (ORU) refers to a formally-organized, structured, and recognized research enterprises that typically contain the word “center,” “institute,” “laboratory,” or “clinic,” and which constitute a unique set of institutional expressions of faculty research interests and expertise.
Non-ORUs: These are typically informal or temporary organizations of limited scope, with comparatively little institutional resource support. They may be grant-funded enterprises. They are not formally chartered or recognized as ORU.
Policy concerning the governance of ORUs and Non-ORUs is found in the Handbook of Operating Procedures > Research and Sponsored Projects > Section IV - Chapter 5