• Open Access

Evaluating Translational Research: A Process Marker Model

Authors

  • William Trochim Ph.D.,

    1. Department of Policy Analysis and Management, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA
    2. Clinical and Translational Science Center, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York, USA
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  • Cathleen Kane M.P.A.,

    1. Department of Policy Analysis and Management, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA
    2. Clinical and Translational Science Center, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York, USA
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  • Mark J. Graham Ph.D.,

    1. Center for Education Research and Evaluation, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
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  • Harold A. Pincus M.D.

    1. Department of Psychiatry and Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
    2. New York-Presbyterian Hospital, New York, New York, USA
    3. Rand Corporation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.
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  • Mark Graham is now at the Center for Scientific Teaching, Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.

W Trochim (wmt1@cornell.edu)

Abstract

Objective: We examine the concept of translational research from the perspective of evaluators charged with assessing translational efforts. One of the major tasks for evaluators involved in translational research is to help assess efforts that aim to reduce the time it takes to move research to practice and health impacts. Another is to assess efforts that are intended to increase the rate and volume of translation. Methods: We offer an alternative to the dominant contemporary tendency to define translational research in terms of a series of discrete “phases.”Results: We contend that this phased approach has been confusing and that it is insufficient as a basis for evaluation. Instead, we argue for the identification of key operational and measurable markers along a generalized process pathway from research to practice. Conclusions: This model provides a foundation for the evaluation of interventions designed to improve translational research and the integration of these findings into a field of translational studies. Clin Trans Sci 2011; Volume 4: 153–162

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