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URMC / Clinical & Translational Science Institute / Stories / April 2017 / CTSI Emphasis on Team Science and Collaboration Influences Criteria for Faculty Promotions

CTSI Emphasis on Team Science and Collaboration Influences Criteria for Faculty Promotions

Team drawing an arrow indication growthWith an increasing culture of team science – fostered in part by the CTSI – the time seems right to highlight revisions to the SMD faculty promotion criteria recognizing that faculty can make important scientific contributions beyond being principal investigator on grants or first or senior author on papers.

Kevin Fiscella, M.D., M.P.H., leader of the Team Science Function at the CTSI, and Jeffrey M. Lyness, M.D., senior associate dean for Academic Affairs at URSMD, recounted the faculty promotion criteria revisions in an article to faculty this week.  

The revisions to the URSMD Regulations of the Faculty made in July 2014, formally recognized the importance of teamwork and collaboration in faculty promotion. The regulations describe excellence in research as “a sustained program of intellectually independent investigative work, recognized by competitively peer-reviewed grants as PI and/or as a collaborative investigator.”

If a faculty member’s intellectual independence is not evident from PI or first/senior author roles, their department chair and referee letters from scientific peers can specifically comment on the unique role the faculty member plays within their investigative team. These letters must describe how the faculty member demonstrates “intellectual stewardship of an identifiable part of the research program.”

The template for the Chair’s letter to the Dean’s Office proposing promotion has been cited by the Association of American Medical Colleges for its recognition of teamwork and collaboration.

Faculty pursuing a team science approach to their work can access resources at the CTSI, which believes multidisciplinary team science enhances the significance, innovation and rigor of URMC research. Get help finding research collaborators through the Research Help Desk, by using our new Find a Collaborator or Mentor tool, or by exploring other ways to make research Connections.

You can find further details on promotions criteria in the SMD Regulations of the Faculty.

Michael Hazard | 4/20/2017

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