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1 How to organise & negotiate research collaborations David Ross MRC Tropical Epidemiology Group Infectious Disease Epidemiology Dep t, LSHTM January 2015.

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Presentation on theme: "1 How to organise & negotiate research collaborations David Ross MRC Tropical Epidemiology Group Infectious Disease Epidemiology Dep t, LSHTM January 2015."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 How to organise & negotiate research collaborations David Ross MRC Tropical Epidemiology Group Infectious Disease Epidemiology Dep t, LSHTM January 2015

2 2 Within the context of a research project… 1.What do we mean by “collaboration”? 2.Who is a collaborator? 3.Why collaborate? 4.What makes collaborations work well? 5.Key steps & if we have time…. 6.Case study Issues

3 3 Within the context of a research project… 1.What do we mean by “collaboration”? 2.Who’s my collaborator? Buzz…zzz…zzz…

4 4 “Collaboration” Collaboration Partnership Not usually: Funder(s)/Sponsors Other researchers in the field who we will not work with on this specific project Overall institutional managers

5 5 Collaborators Research collaborators eg.Social scientists Epidemiologists Statisticians, data managers Lab scientists, etc, etc xService providers eg.Drug company (drug/placebo) Lab services

6 6 Research Collaborators 1.Gatekeepers eg.Heads of institutions 2.Co-Principal Investigators eg. PhD supervisor, key senior others 3.Co-Investigators eg.Other do-ers 4.Advisors eg. PhD advisory panel members 5.Other staff Employed by research project to provide a service eg. Interviewers, data entry clerks, lab technicians, admin staff

7 7 Collaborators 1.Internal Your own institution 2.External Other institutions

8 8 Why collaborate? Buzz…zzz…zzz…

9 9 Why collaborate? Additionality Skills Funds Human resources Networks etc

10 10 What makes collaborations work well? Buzz…zzz…zzz…

11 11 What makes collaborations work well? 1.Win-Win  Clear benefit to all parties  Put yourself in their shoes 2.Mutual respect and appreciation 3.Good communication  Formal systems (eg meetings, agree how decisions will be taken)  Informal  Learn each other’s paradigms & language

12 12 What makes collaborations work well? (cont…d) 4.Clearly defined and agreed roles 5.Continuous effort 6.Mechanisms for managing and fostering the collaborations are often as important as mechanisms for managing the programme itself

13 Swiss Commission for Research Partnerships with Developing Countries (KFPE) Guide for Transboundary Research Partnerships 11 Principles 1.Set the agenda together 2.Interact with the stakeholders  eg. potential users of the research findings, both local and global 3.Clarify responsibilities 4.Account to the beneficiaries 5.Promote mutual learning  Don’t assume it is one-way 6.Enhance capacities of partners 13

14 Swiss Commission for Research Partnerships with Developing Countries (KFPE) Guide for Transboundary Research Partnerships 11 Principles (cont…d) 7.Share data and networks  Not extractive; enable local ownership, analysis & interpretation 8.Disseminate results  both locally and globally 9.Pool profits and merits  Publications, presentations, patents 10.Apply results  both locally and globally 11.Secure outcomes for the future  eg. Sustainable southern institutions 14

15 15 Steps 1.Decide who to collaborate with  Don’t leap in, do “homework” first  Which institutions?  Which individuals? 2.Approach them  Informal  Formal Usually in that order

16 16 Steps 3.Clarify inputs & roles  What will each of us bring to the table?  Commitments  Who will be the overall project leader (institution & person)?  Who will manage the money?  Who will arrange and who will chair meetings, produce the minutes, report to the,  Etc 4.Communication channels  Meetings, committees, etc  System(s) for decision making

17 17 Steps 5.Clarify “outputs”  What do each of us want out of this project?  Buildings/space  Equipment  Staff  Overheads  Profile (eg. who makes presentations)  Publication – agree early, may need rules (eg. MRC SPHSU guidelines)

18 18 Steps 6.Keep checking how things are going From their perspective From your own perspective Don’t assume it’s all okay, just because nobody’s complaining!

19 19 Discussion….

20 20 Case Study

21 21 MEMA kwa Vijana “Good Things for Young People” Government of Tanzania, Ministry of Education & Culture Ministry of Health African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) National Institute for Medical Research, Tanzania (NIMR) London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)

22 22 Tanzania

23 23

24 24

25 25

26 26 Objectives To decrease HIV incidence STD prevalence Unwanted pregnancies through  Delayed sexual debut  Decreased number of sexual partners  Less high risk sexual contacts  More appropriate use of reproductive health services

27 27 Components 1.In-School Sexual Health Education Last 3 years (Years 5-7) of primary school 2.Improving the youth-friendliness of reproductive health services 3.Peer condom promotion & distribution by youth 4.Supportive community activities

28 28 Health Impact Community Randomised Controlled Trial Cohort of 9,645 adolescents  Baseline (Aug-Dec 1998)  Interim Follow-up Survey (Feb-Jun 2000)  Final Follow-up Survey (Oct 2001-Apr 2002)

29 29 What did each institution bring? Collaborating Institutions London Sch Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) MRC Social & Public Hlth Sci Unit (SPHSU), Glasgow National Institute for Medical Research, Tz (NIMR) African Medical & Research Foundation (AMREF) Government of Tanzania  Ministry of Education & Culture  Ministry of Health

30 30 LSHTM Access to funding (EC & MRC) Research expertise (sexual health, epidemiology, statistics, lab science) International networks (research, funds, supplies, etc) Staff development (in-service, short courses, MScs, PhDs)

31 31 MRC SPHSU, Glasgow Research expertise (sexual health, social science) International networks (research) Staff development Support for funding from MRC (proposed funder)

32 32 National Institute for Medical Research, Mwanza (Parastatal) National & local presence & reputation (co-host institution) Research expertise (sexual health, epidemiology, clinical, lab, data management, field data & specimen collection methods, etc) National & local networks (incl. links to government) Staff

33 33 African Medical & Research Foundation (AMREF), Mwanza (East African NGO) Regional, national & local presence & reputation Intervention expertise Operations research Help fundraising through local offices of AMREF in Europe & N America

34 34 Ministries of Health & Education Policy  Rules  New developments  Potential for widespread implementation in future Implementation  In-school activities Ministry of Education: teachers, trainers, supervisors  Health services Ministry of Health: health workers, trainers, supervisors


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