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Strategy and Project Management in the Academic Setting What best practices from industry can be applied within the academic setting?

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Presentation on theme: "Strategy and Project Management in the Academic Setting What best practices from industry can be applied within the academic setting?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Strategy and Project Management in the Academic Setting What best practices from industry can be applied within the academic setting?

2 Coulter Program at USC: Portfolio of 15 projects currently

3 Industry and Academia Have Differing Goals and Metrics of Success Industry focuses on translation and products - scientists pursue tangible entities (validated targets, novel molecules, biomarker assays, medical devices)  Measure of success : $$$ Academia focus basic research knowledge creation though basic research and dissemination of knowledge  Measure of success : Tenure Principles of effectiveness in managing project progression apply equally in both settings – project advancement is fundamental to both

4 Project Progression is a Team Sport in Industry Many disciplines and functions are need to move projects forward (eg. Chemists, biologists, toxicologist, pharmacologists, engineers, manufacturers, lawyers, marketers) Highly effective use of multiple resources serves the purpose of translation In contrast there are incentives (getting tenure) for academics to lean towards individual research in order to substantiate significant impact

5 A Multidisciplinary Approach Can Be Dilutive to Your Perceived Impact Consider how to bring additional expertise to your project (collaborators, consultants, contractors) especially If you are translationally-oriented

6 Principles of Project Management Phases of Project Management Cornerstones of Effective Project Management Initiation Planning Execution Monitoring Closing Milestone-basedAccountabilityManaging Risk

7 Initiation & Planning of Projects Assemble team o think about external experts! o student timelines with less flexibility Identify goals, establish milestones/aims Create a project plan (simple or detailed) o Specific project activities & tasks o Timing of activities o Inter-dependencies among work streams o Cost o Important milestones

8 Project Plan and Timeline to Execute and Monitor Project Progress: Microsoft Gantt Chart is an Industry Standard

9 Simplified Project Plan and Timeline Modeled After Gantt Chart (NIH)

10 High Level Project Plan and Timeline to Track Progress Against Project Activities

11 Accountability Regularly scheduled team meetings Create agendas for team meetings and follow them Team meeting minutes with ACTION ITEMS assigned to team members Review ACTION ITEMS at next team meeting to ensure they have been completed Careful tracking of documentation/data

12 Managing Risks Identify risks and have some form of mitigation for these risks Supplement your team with complementary skill sets Formulate endpoints and pivot if necessary Build optionality into your project plans and make adjustments to your research direction as you build your information base Build optionality into your project plans and make adjustments to your research direction as you build your information base

13 Some Important Issues for Academic Laboratories You Need to Think About Research data retention Research data organization and storage Industry utilizes electronic laboratory notebooks and has extensive infrastructure to support capturing work product, data and inventions Problem: data walking out the door Solution: centralized data management

14 Data Management Tools Central Desktop: Electronic Filing System for Documents & Data Functionality for Tracking Project Plans & Timelines Reporting and Monitoring A Collaboration Tool

15 Integrated Project Management Systems for Project Tracking and Information Reporting

16 Best Practices from Industry that Can Be Leveraged by Academia in Managing Your Projects Defined milestones Defined project needs / resources Mapping of timelines Team building with complementary team skills Data management and storage Principles of effectiveness in managing project progression should apply equally in both settings – project advancement is fundamental to both

17 Contact Information Christine Matheson Director, USC - Coulter Translational Partnership University of Southern California mobile:


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