Collaborative team science gets results

April 21, 2014 3:00 PM

Diedre Boling

Gone are the days when a lonely scientist would work very much on his or her own in a lab or office, spending long solitary hours trying to solve complex issues. Today’s approach to the compelling research problems of our time, such as climate change, chronic disease and obesity, involves many scientists, often from diverse disciplines, who come together to develop robust solutions that have been addressed from multiple perspectives.

Encouraging and promoting “team science” is the professional goal of Holly J. Falk-Krzesinski, vice president for global academic and research relations for academic publisher Elsevier. She will discuss the team science concept and transdisciplinary research at a seminar in room 205 of the Woldenberg Art Center at noon on Tuesday (April 22) as part of the D.W. Mitchell Lecture Series and the Provost’s Faculty Seminars in Interdisciplinary Research.

Falk-Krzensinski’s mission is to create activities that emphasize collaboration and develop scholarly communication through online tools and resources as well as direct, in-person conferences, workshops and events.

“The public health, social, technological and environmental problems that impact our world are complex, but increasingly we are able to address them through scientific pursuit,” she says. “The sophistication of these challenges necessitates cross-disciplinary engagement and collaboration, and the longer term interaction of groups of investigators — what is termed team science. Such team-based research collaborations are also an essential feature of a robust translational research enterprise.”

Included in her talk will be a discussion about the most effective practices for productive scientific collaboration and ways that researchers can be more competitive in approaching team science proposals to external funding agencies.

The following day she will conduct a workshop on team science with the transdisciplinary Tulane Stress and Environment Research Collaborative on Health Disparities, which includes faculty across the schools of Public Health, Medicine, Social Work, Science and Engineering, and Law.

Diedre Boling is director of communications for the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000