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Research Leads

By bringing together the Research Directors, Deans and/or Research Vice-Presidents from EUHA members, the Research Leads Network cooperates to advance the Responsible Research and Innovation agenda. This includes, for example, applying policies and regulations that bring research and innovation closer to citizens and improve the overall quality of EUHA members' research and innovation.

The activity of the Research Leads network formally started in April 2018, with the first face-to-face meeting held in Barcelona. The network's participants are within the highest ranks of research directorates in EUHA institutions and have extensive knowledge of the research performed at their home institutions.

The network aims to encourage the researchers and clinicians within EUHA institutions to collaborate and leverage each other's strengths. The network intends to be a driving force for research and innovation, lobbying to shape European policy and health agendas, and an opinion former in all research and innovation–related matters.

In addition to each institution's research themes, the network tries to identify shared research and development priorities where collaboration is most needed to have the most significant impact.

Aims of the Research Leads network

The Research Leads Network wants to develop a Responsible Research and Innovation culture, through joint projects in clinical trial results publication, recruitment & promotion practices, and FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) research data among others. The main objectives of the network are:

  • Being a driving force for research and innovation
  • Promoting collaborative research initiatives & synergies among EUHA members
  • Positioning as a strong lobby, by taking joint decisions related to research that could have a strong impact at the European level (i.e. Position papers)
  • Building partnerships (i.e. with industry through IMI and with international networks and infrastructures such as EATRIS, ECRIN, BBMRI, and ELIXIR…)
  • Increasing competitiveness by exchanging best practices
  • Achieving staff excellence through training and staff exchanging

  • To accomplish the network's aim, several working groups (WG) have been developed within the network: the Clinical Trials WG, the Responsible Research and Innovation WG, the Grant Officers Network, the GRAIN (strateGic pRojects Accelerator & fundIng eNgine) and Innovation Network.

    The Clinical Trials Working Group, coordinated by Prof Tabassome Simon from AP-HP, aims to foster collaboration amongst EUHA hospitals to set up and speed up the development of joint academic clinical trials. It also wants to enhance the collaboration between researchers within EUHA institutions (in collaboration with the Education WG and RRI WG).

    The RRI Working Group, coordinated by Ulrich Dirnagl (Charité) and Roberto Buccione (Ospedale San Raffaele) wants to develop a Responsible Research and Innovation culture, including through joint projects in clinical trials results publication, recruitment & promotion practices, and FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, reusable) research data. As part of the strategic plan, the RRI WG will be working on 3 topics, which capitalise on expertise among EUHA members.

  • Project 1: Tracking and improving timely publication of EUHA interventional trial results
  • Project 2: Making EUHA research results FAIR
  • Project 3: Setting up an automated benchmarking of all EUHA interested members for selected indicators

    The Grant Officers Network and the GRAIN aim to detect financing mechanisms and strategic initiatives or existing programmes that may be of interest for the EUHA community and would benefit from our leadership. Specifically, in the case of GRAIN (coordinated by Federica Righi, from Vall d’Hebron) it was created in March 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 breakout, as the Research Leads Network detected the need for establishing a Covid-19 Task Force to quickly evaluate research ideas worth pursuing at European level. Afterwards, decision to expand the TF beyond COVID-19 was taken and GRAIN goals become wider to boost joint grant applications to enable EUHA’s strategic objectives but also to act as an accelerator of incipient ideas/projects/initiatives coming from Principal Investigators. In 2021, 8 collaboration proposals were shared within this group and 3 proposals were submitted with the support and initial engine of GRAIN.

    The Innovation Network, formally approved at the Members’ Assembly held in Leuven in June 2022 (and co-coordinated by Jeanette Tuval from Karolinska, and Mariona Esquerdo from Vall d’Hebron) aims to create a common place to discuss innovation strategies as well as to share and build-up knowledge and best practices relating to innovation.
  • Coordinator

    Roberto Buccione

    Milan, Italy

    Ospedale San Raffaele

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