Interventional Researcher Networking

From the VIVO Conference:


This presentation will describe a set of interventional actions undertaken to increase researchers’ awareness of other researchers in a pool of potential collaborators. In an effort to foster new collaborations within a newly-formed institute, the authors developed a set of novel interventions and implemented them at an institute launch conference. These interventions included:

-Objective detection of researchers working in specific topic areas, to supplement institute founders’ knowledge of researchers working in relevant topic areas with information about previously-unknown researchers also working in these topic areas. Objective detection allowed for increased inclusiveness and comprehensiveness of the launch conference invitee list.

-Introductions based upon data-driven, Netflix-style recommendations: “Please allow us to introduce you to {researcher} due to {reason(s)}.” Introductions were made based upon responses to the institute’s launch conference registration survey. Attendees were matched based upon expressing strong mutual interest in a topic and/or by study method in situations where one researcher expressed a need for expertise in a method and another research expressed the ability to share methodological expertise in the same method. Reciprocal methodological need/provision matches were considered especially strong matches. Existing collaboration data covering co-authored publications and co-participation on sponsored projects were used to rule out matches who had collaborated in the past.

-Seating arrangements based upon the same matching process underlying the introductions

-Conversation-provoking material, including a visualization of attendees arranged according to indicated areas of strong interest

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