The Community & Collaboration Core serves as the epicenter for the Community Engagement module and the Collaboration and Multidisciplinary Team module.
With a primary mission to serve the community, the Community & Collaboration Core's Community Engagement module has developed a number of approaches to engage local community members (including the Community Advisory Board, the Science Café 360 and the DC Health Matters web portal). Additionally, the Collaboration and Multidisciplinary Team module has served to foster collaborative research teams among the varied scientific and clinical disciplines and the broad community (e.g., lay public, patient advocacy groups, foundations, industry).
The Community & Collaboration Core is designed to collaborate with other CTSI-CN Cores and Modules to develop:
- Continuing education for community clinicians to learn about research ethics, recruitment, and retention;
- Community engagement and cultural competency curricula and training;
- Links for T1-T4 pilot grant and KL2 career development awardees to community groups;
- Community-engaged research methods consultations; and
Links for researchers seeking ties with community-based intermediary groups, such as patient advocates
The Community Engagement (CE) module supports research that investigates, evaluates, and disseminates solutions to pressing public health problems. We focus on bridging academic research and community practice to improve public health. Our underlying goal is to improve trust between the research domain and community stakeholders by providing opportunities for both entities to engage in thoughtful, bi-directional dialogue and collaborative initiatives, such as the Science Cafes.
The CE module is also home to the CTSI-CN Community Advisory Board (CAB). The CAB is composed of a diverse group of individuals who advise and guide the CTSI-CN on community engagement issues.
AIM 1: Increase the integration of community engagement principles throughout the translational research continuum by enhancing system-wide resources that facilitate and incentivize investigators to develop
community partnerships – INVESTIGATOR PERSPECTIVE
AIM 2: Increase community participation in all phases of translational research through community-driven, culturally-sensitive, and evidence-based initiatives – COMMUNITY PERSPECTIVE
AIM 3: Advance the science regarding best practice models of community engagement by assessing and disseminating innovative methods of community engagement – CTSA HUB PERSPECTIVE
Collaboration & Multidisciplinary Team Science
The goal of the Collaboration and Multidisciplinary Team Science (CMTS) module is to foster collaborative research teams among the varied scientific and clinical disciplines represented in the CTSI-CN and the broad community. We have focused our efforts in three areas:
1) Voucher Funding Opportunities
Several times a year funding announcements are made available on the CTSI-CN website, specifically to support services for research carried out by multidisciplinary teams. Our goal is to encourage formation of productive teams that can answer challenging research questions through cutting-edge approaches that require expertise from different fields. Previously funded vouchers are listed HERE.
2) App Development Workshop
We host an annual collaborative event each spring at GWU that focuses on pitching and developing novel medical software applications. Open calls for ideas are posted each fall on the CTSI-CN website. The ten most promising are then invited to the spring workshop, where the ideas are pitched and vetted, and may be selected for development. Selected projects receive technical and commercialization advice from experienced faculty. The first workshop was held last spring and resulted in several awards to assist investigators with app development. The first prototype app, BabyData, automates calculations commonly used in NeoNatal Intensive Care Units. It is currently being tested by the clinical lead. The call for ideas for the Spring 2018 workshop will go out soon.
3) Team Science
Team science is a collaborative interdisciplinary effort to address a scientific challenge that leverages the strengths and expertise of professionals trained in different fields. We have developed a team science survey that was recently sent to all faculty. Based on the results of that survey, we plan to offer educational activities and services that address the needs of the community.
The Collaboration & Multidisciplinary Team Science module is designed to address the following aims:
AIM 1: Establish a consultative and educational service to promote multi-disciplinary team collaborations among CNHS and GW faculty
AIM 2: Expand the CTSI-CN voucher program to focus on seed funding for novel collaborations with patient and community stakeholders and under-represented groups
AIM 3: Design and implement an annual multi-disciplinary collaborative event (Innovator Pop-Ups) focused on innovative pediatric medical device prototyping that includes clinicians, scientists, engineers, and
AIM 4: Collaborate with other hubs in the CTSA network to develop, adopt, and disseminate best practices in team science