Fostering Collaboration at UCSF - presented at Univ of Melbourne Research Profiling Conference 2014


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Presentation at University of Melbourne Research Profiling Conference, Jan 2014.

Fostering collaboration between researchers at UCSF and beyond

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  • UCSF – biomedical focused UCSF is one of 60 US biomedical research institutions, funded by the NIH, that form a consortium of academic institutions referred to at the CTSA
  • Help speed up the translation of research to improvements in health By identifying gaps in the existing infrastructure, and providing services and resources to fill those gaps – such as clinical trial support, training such as courses in designing clinical research, pilot funding
  • My particular program, the VH – People from industryFocused on efficiencies, breaking down barriers, with a strong bent on user centered design combined with effective communications and marketing
  • Designed and maintain various web sites from: ctsi org site The description of our Institute, including the full grant proposals for what we said we wanted to accomplish, to metrics and reports on how we’ve done against our goals – are all posted on this site
  • Access pointcreateIntegrated access to knowledge about people, services and resources to further the research mission of investigators and the University
  • Site where researchers access services accelerate web site was created to put everything up – in one place – so researchers could find experts, core facilities, access clinical research services or get expert help.
  • 2 stories of collaboration1 our approach to garnering adoption of our research profile system at UCSF
  • "Profiles has been getting a huge amount of traffic. Last year, we were getting 2,200 visits per day to UCSF Profiles, 70% of that via Google. But the numbers keep going up. Last week, we were averaging 2,900 visits to UCSF Profiles every day."
  • IT’s a collaboration tool – and achieving success at UCSF has been all about collaboration! We have a small survey that pops … surprisingly many folks do submit substantive comments
  • quotes –
  • Since 2011 – we rolled up the comments and along with data from goog analytics here’s a summary of WHO uses UCSF Profiles, how and for what …
  • we collaborate with everyone we can – to hopefully achieve our goals and theirs too.
  • We hope we’ve made their pages look good, and have added as much info about them automatically as possible Auto mining of pubs and grants, to working with departments to get photos and videos to populate the page on someone’s behalf
  • Using goog analytics
  • some of our biggest national news outlets are linking to our little res networking tool NYTWSJ Every news story on that mentions a researcher links back to their profile Howd we get here?
  • We’re playing nice with Google We’ve search engine optimized our pages with the goal of one of our pages coming up in the top 3 search results for a person a UCSF
  • And not only do news outlets find our pages -- we can see from our analytics – that traffic is coming in from all over, inside and outside of UCSF -- and it continues to grow
  • Strong collaborations have also been built with IT Staff and administrative staff across campus
  • Now, we are using the data in the system for other purposes … for example
  • started looking at some of the data, visualizing and making some inferences on the collaborative nature of departments and schools, based on co-authorship data
  • Software nerds can easily build apps using the platform now independently and simultaneouslyDelivering more features more quickly to our researchers will accelerate science
  • The same way you can install apps on your phone, you can install apps in your profiling tool. Videos inline, presentations from conferencesFrom 3 academic institutions and 1 industry partner
  • What’s next
  • Example of faculty connecting / collaborating with other faculty – directly –Leveling the playing fieldProposal development Asking for input So I wanted also to share with model of collaboration that we’ve been using for the last few years, and lately with more success Our Open Proposals platform is an example where we have had actual success in getting these people to connect (and when I say these people, I refer to investigators at UCSF…) We have had success getting these people to talk to each other, connect and form new teams …. But it’s via our Open Proposals platform – Segue slide to explain leveling of playing field and direct interaction between researchers --
  • What’s Open ProposalsOnline tool Opens up the proposal development process in a public way Encourages input and feedback early, in the interest of improving proposals before review Crowdsource ideas Improved efficiencies Team compositionQuality of proposalsInterdisciplinary ideasTransparency
  • It differs from today’s black-box review model -- in proposal development – where oftentimes there are redundant ideas and missed opportunities… Missed opportunities for collaboratingRedundant proposalsInsufficient sphere of input Proposal apps posted onlineCommunity comments with improvements, support, team members, critical inputProposers improve applicationsCommittee reviews final proposals and makes award decisions.Open Proposal applications are posted online and made available for review by a community of peers. Colleagues are invited to comment on proposals and make suggestions for improvement. Commenters are able to offer support and note useful resources, and might even join the proposal team.Reviewing entity may also provide early critical input to ensure proposals are responsive to the opportunity. Proposers are able to use this feedback to improve upon an application throughout the Open Proposal process. Revisions and comments are closed and committee reviews final proposals and makes award decisions.
  • A culture change Strategies for engagementOffer $ Create incentives – must comment to win Couple it with an in person meeting Lots of communicationsSocial networking features like following and liking – auto emails Links back to Profiles so people can find out easily exactly who commented or submitted the proposal
  • Open Proposals has been successfully adopted at UCSF. Key metrics we track include:Proposals retracted, highlighting redundancy Proposals merged by teams recognizing benefits of collaborating. Multiple proposals actively revisedEngagement: 40+ comments on a single proposal! Adoption: Non-CTSI groups use it. $3+ million in funding distributed Outcomes: Retractions, new teams formed, proposals revised & improvedThe design and implementation of a state-of-the-art randomization system that could be made available to the global research community at very low cost would facilitate the conduct of properly designed and blinded RCTs and remove an important barrier to the conduct of interventional research. for smaller trials with more constrained budgetsOne commentor gave us 2 web sites that were already set up to do what we had proposed. Thanks for the referrals. We were not aware of them before and had not found them on our search.The submitter looked into the options in more detail, published the costs to the OP forum, and withdrew their proposal
  • Examples: UCSF’s Research Resources program – allocation of $2MM for investment in campus-wide technology centers / cores to broadly support the diverse UCSF research communityIdeas awarded were for mass spectrometer, to Waters nanoACUITY Ultra Performance LC (UPLC) System, Computational Infrastructure for Advanced CryoEM Data collectionMassive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) to be offered through the University's partnership with CourseraIdeas for the ‘Caring Wisely’ initiative to improve value of healthcare delivery, with finalists supported by the Medical Center for implementation. Improving the Use of Appropriate Respiratory Therapies, reducingrbc transfusions 15 Open Proposal-mediated initiatives include the solicitation, improvement and selection of ideas for- New initiatives for the $112 million renewal proposal to NIH for the CTSINew hi-tech cores at UCSF from a $2 million poolProjects to improve research administration at UCSF from a $350K poolIdeas for the ‘Caring Wisely’ initiative to improve value of healthcare delivery, with finalists supported by the Medical Center for implementation.Couple of stories of withdraw or combine … in real words
  • Currently live with a pilot for UCM’s faculty-focused development of a strategic academic visionFirst pilot where UCSF hosts the Opportunity for an external group
  • Our approach
  • Fostering Collaboration at UCSF - presented at Univ of Melbourne Research Profiling Conference 2014

    1. 1. Clinical and Translational Science Institute / CTSI at the University of California, San Francisco Fostering Collaboration at UCSF and Beyond The Virtual Home Program, CTSI at UCSF Research Profiles Conference, The University of Melbourne January 2014
    2. 2. What is CTSI at UCSF? • University of California, San Francisco • The Clinical & Translational Science Institute – Established in 2006 – One of 60 institutions comprising Clinical & Translational Science Awards (CTSA) consortium – Funded by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH)
    3. 3. What does CTSI do? • The Goal: to facilitate the rapid translation of research to improvements in patient and community health. • How? – – – – – Infrastructure Services Pilot funding Training Coalitions and partnerships
    4. 4. The Virtual Home Program Start-up mentality Focused on: • • • • Collaboration Efficiency Communications Technology as the means to an end
    5. 5.
    6. 6. A Virtual Home for Researchers A single point of entry to access all of CTSI’s services and resources • Focus on research • Minimize time spent on administrative, regulatory and information seeking hurdles
    7. 7.
    8. 8.
    9. 9. 2013 Traffic • 809,000 visits = average 2,216 visits/day • Accessed from 1,700 universities • 88% of researcher profiles have been viewed 10+ times
    10. 10.
    11. 11. • • • • • • Helped me prepare lectures and work with students I found a potential book contributor It helps me find info about faculty Identify potential mentors Looking for research opportunities Great resource for finding potential research collaborators and for PhD dissertation committees • Helped prepare research critique • Helped find new nursing research problems • Found info about doctors
    12. 12. • Researchers use it to find collaborators and identify mentors • Funders use it research potential grantees • Administrators use it understand research trends and find speakers • Journalists use it to find potential sources • IT staff use it to keep department websites updated • Development staff use it to match researchers with opportunities • Patients use it to evaluate clinicians' research background • Visiting scholars use it find people to connect with • UCSF applicants use it to understand current research areas • Reviewers use it to research author background and experience
    13. 13. Our approach: play nice in the sandbox with everyone
    14. 14. Researchers … look good with minimal work on their part
    15. 15. Researchers … Dr. Smith 342 times including are told about views to their profile pages
    16. 16. Researchers … are found and linked to from prestigious publications
    17. 17. Google finds our pages based on some search engine optimizations Clean title Clean URL Metadata ✓ Description ✓ Sitemaps ✓
    18. 18. Patients, Funders, Reviewers search for and find UCSF Researchers 70,000 60,000 World, outside USA 40,000 USA, outside California 30,000 California, outside San Francisco/UCSF 20,000 San Francisco, outside UCSF UCSF Campus 10,000 Dec-09 Feb-10 Apr-10 Jun-10 Aug-10 Oct-10 Dec-10 Feb-11 Apr-11 Jun-11 Aug-11 Oct-11 Dec-11 Feb-12 Apr-12 Jun-12 Aug-12 Oct-12 Dec-12 Feb-13 Apr-13 Jun-13 Monthly visits 50,000
    19. 19. IT and Admin staff … benefit from syndicating UCSF Profiles data on campus websites
    20. 20. Faculty and Staff… use the data for targeting emails and more Photo credit: ©2013
    21. 21. Targeted Emails Identify 1,100 faculty who have published in an Open Access journal UCSF Library sends out the email
    22. 22. Data Analysis UCSF’s top 20 internally collaborative departments Epidemiology & Biostatistics: 424 of 829 publications co-authored with other UCSF departments “Thanks a lot for this. This is something we claim all the time, but who knew we were the first. I am so happy to have this info and will definitely broadcast it.” -- Chair, UCSF Dept of Epi / Biostats
    23. 23. Software developers… can now build upon the Profiles platform Photo credit: ©2013 Photo credit: Tantek, used under CC
    24. 24. Free Apps! • UCSF integrated OpenSocial with Research Networking • Profiles and VIVO can use the apps • 12+ free apps available Learn more at
    25. 25. Funders and Development Staff UCSF Faculty, Residents, Post Docs UCSF IT Developers UCSF Schools & Departments & Staff
    26. 26. Linking across institutions
    27. 27. Another model for collaboration
    28. 28. Used for proposal development • • • • Internet-based Crowdsourcing model Open Collaborative
    29. 29. How does it work? 1. RFP 2. Post proposal online 3. Crowdsource comments, improvements on each proposal 4. Improve proposal, re-post 5. Review and award
    30. 30. “Put my idea out in the OPEN ?!?” Photo credit:
    31. 31. 18 months 18 RFPs 30 + proposals per RFP 40 + comments per proposal $3,700,000+ distributed Photo credit:
    32. 32. Spread across campus
    33. 33. Moving on out …
    34. 34. • Make everyone look good • Shifts in culture can happen • Focus on usage
    35. 35. Thanks!