Strategic Plan artworkStrategic Plan for Research (FY 2018-2022)

Strategic Plan artworkResearch – Mission
To cultivate and sustain a culture of inquiry at all levels of professional endeavor; to conduct innovative research in pursuit of discovery, interprofessional collaboration, and integration of research into continuously improving health care that benefits the health and well-being of the population of Texas and beyond.

Research – Core Values
Sustain an environment that integrates research seamlessly into clinical care, to create a learning healthcare system that delivers compassionate patient care focusing on effectiveness, quality, safety, and service.
Provide a broad, competency-based research curriculum emphasizing integrity, professionalism and strong methodological grounding.
Embrace a culture of research, open inquiry, evidence-based and evidence-generating practice, and lifelong learning, along the scientific continuum from fundamental discovery to population research.
Cultivate strong interdisciplinary research programs and develop and sustain enabling infrastructure.
Foster a diverse and inclusive research community.
Promote and enable student research throughout the curriculum.
Support the health and well-being of students, faculty and staff in research activity.
Promote interprofessional collaboration with strong institutional support.
Support leadership and innovation in research, training and translation of research to care.
Conduct research intended to promote discovery and identification of disease mechanisms.
Conduct research focused on improvement of population health and reduction of health care disparities.

Research – Goal
The medical school will provide the resources and environment needed to enable development of a sustainable culture of inquiry, which is intended to integrate research into the daily professional operations of all service and educational activities. Research is seen as a lens through which the other mission areas are viewed, with focus on bringing the tools of research to continuous learning and problem solving. Practice should be not only evidence-based, but evidence-generating (learning healthcare). This goal will be achieved through objectives in the following three areas: collaboration, infrastructure, and career development.

Objective 1 – Collaboration.
To develop a robust culture of multidisciplinary collaboration that engages professionals who may be at different levels of educational attainment and training

STRATEGIES
• Encourage collaboration with multidisciplinary showcase conferences such as the McGovern Medical School Research Retreat and other interdisciplinary programs.
• Incentivize collaboration through development of collaborative grant competitions that require multidisciplinary teams. For instance, we have started a joint program with Rice University that incentivizes collaboration between scholars in different disciplines (eg., Engineering and Medicine) and involves faculty and students.
• Continue to develop and support multidisciplinary Centers and Institutes that serve as academic homes to collaborative teams. More than 35 Centers, Institutes and Research Core Service Centers exist at the present time, and their productivity has established the value of such initiatives.
• Develop and support multidisciplinary programs for communities of scholars, which can benefit from the infrastructure programs of the institutional Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences (CCTS), which is the nominal designation for our NIH-supported Clinical and Translational Sciences (CTSA) program.

OUTCOMES
• Assess the outputs of new collaborations developed through the showcase events as measured by collaborative publications and grants, especially those received by people who have not worked together previously.
• Assess publications and follow-on funding success of teams funded by multidisciplinary grants.
• Assess research productivity of multidisciplinary Center and Institute members by traditional metrics (bibliometrics, funding), and also by retention data as compared to the faculty at large.
• Develop a comprehensive research-related faculty satisfaction survey policy going forward.
• Measure outputs of multidisciplinary teams using established tools such as the National
Center for Advancing Translational Sciences’ (NCATS) Common Metrics and Balanced
Scorecard initiatives, which are used to evaluate the productivity of NIH-sponsored
Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA).

Objective 2 – Infrastructure.
To secure and sustain a robust research-enabling infrastructure, to support the research mission

STRATEGIES
• Increase support for bridging grants, just-missed grants, and mission-target grants, to develop and support the research mission.
• Increase seed grant and other pilot project opportunities.
• Provide sustained core funding for research service centers, in support of basic, translational and clinical research efforts.
• Develop research-related philanthropy and maintain a team of collaborative development professionals whose focus is to attract resources for research.
• Enhance intellectual property development and technology transfer infrastructure to help bring research findings into broadest use where they can have the largest impact.
• Promote and support the student Summer Research and Scholarly Concentration Programs and the student Academic Career Track.
• Expand and provide additional resources for an office that specifically promotes and supports medical student research.

OUTCOMES
• Measure the effectiveness of bridging and just-missed funding assistance as a catalyst for follow-on extramural funding.
• Measure the effectiveness of seed grant and pilot grant programs for generating follow-on extramural funding.
• Assess publications using bibliometric tools such as citations, journal impact factor, alt-metrics (social media impact) and follow on funding success of teams funded by infrastructure grants.
• Measure yearly growth of service center activity, collaboration and output.
• Measure yearly growth in philanthropic support and document its use to support research.
• Document engagements between research and tech transfer professionals, and the success of translation of research to the market (patents, new products).
• Measure impact of the expanded office of student research (% of students who participate, % and adequacy of stipends for summer research, research products arising
from these experiences).

Objective 3 – Career Development.
To develop and sustain a world-class research workforce, composed of professionals at multiple levels of education in multiple disciplines

STRATEGIES
• Expand comprehensive research training to students, postdoctoral trainees, faculty, research staff, and research support personnel.
• Enhance comprehensive training in research ethics, responsible conduct of research and research regulatory affairs. Continue to develop scholarly content and research in best
practices in these areas.
• Develop, sustain and reward mentorship of the highest quality in all areas of research.
• Recruit, develop and retain a research workforce that functions at the highest level. Invest in the recruitment of key people, and identify pathways to leadership in research activity.

OUTCOMES
• Document the number of professionals served by the research training programs, assess participant feedback for continuous quality improvement, and assess the career progress of participants in the career development programs. A new management system in the postdoctoral office will improve capture of this information.
• Assess frequency and identify remedies for research-related compliance issues. Assess scholarly output and national-level participation in research ethics and regulatory affairs societies, such as the Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research (PRIM&R) organization.
• Survey mentor/mentee productivity and satisfaction, and assess the effects of mentorship on career and leadership development.
• Assess overall workforce satisfaction, productivity and retention.
• All of the above assessments are outcomes being tracked by the CTSA’s evaluation plan.

Plan Oversight and Monitoring
A strategic plan oversight committee has overall responsibility for monitoring the plan and for making adjustments as necessary to meet the plan’s goals and objectives. The committee is chaired by Dr. Charles Miller, Associate Vice President for Clinical Research and Healthcare Quality, and is advisory to the Dean of the medical school, Dr. Barbara Stoll, who has the authority and resources to approve recommended change as necessary. The oversight committee represents all major areas of the research mission, and also includes senior leaders from our institutional CTSA program, the Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences (CCTS). The committee expects to meet semi-annually, or more frequently on an ad-hoc basis if a need arises or if the Dean requests an advisory opinion or directs the committee to study some concern or new development that may affect the strategic approach to research. Faculty and staff are valued and respected.
Emphasize high quality, culturally responsive patient care, research, and training.
Enrichment of the educational environment with our diverse community.
Commitment to a diverse physician workforce that is able to meet the needs of our increasingly diverse patient population.

Strategic Plan artwork