The research teams who are receiving funding as part of a GACD research programme form a community of researchers and funding agency representatives under the banner of the GACD Research Network. Through the network, members have the opportunity to participate in joint activities in order to share information and develop common approaches to their research.
The collaboration of the research teams is a crucial aspect of GACD research programmes and is expected to increase the impact of the research that is conducted and result in knowledge sharing and capacity building. The Research Network meets annually at the Annual Scientific Meeting, with additional conference calls throughout the year. The joint activities take the form of a number of Working Groups, which are formed and chaired by researchers who choose to work together on common themes across their projects. The GACD Secretariat’s role is to facilitate and support the Working Groups going forward.
The Research Network aims to:
- Form a framework which enables research teams to successfully work together
- Identify common approaches and areas of collective interest
- Provide a platform for members to learn from and gain a better understanding of each research team’s study protocol
- Increase the impact of the research programme as a whole
- Collaborate on joint publications
The GACD researcher journey
Table 1 below describes the various ways that GACD researchers can engage with the Research Network. Any member of the network is able to participate across various GACD platforms, regardless of seniority. This table provides examples of engagement opportunities, which have largely been driven by GACD researchers:
1. Sharing protocols and data for joint projects & publications
2. Contributing to the development of the GACD Common Data Dictionaries
3. Attending Annual Scientific Meetings
4. Participating in Research Network Calls
1. Intellectual contribution to joint publications texts & other collaborative research outputs
2. Becoming a member of a Working Group
3. Leading a session or being speaker at the Annual Scientific Meeting
1. Research programme co-chair
2. Working Group chair
3. Initiating and driving joint articles & other collaborative research outputs
4. Development of new workstream, (e.g. Implementation Science Workshop)
Table 1. Level of GACD involvement.
What our researchers say:
" “Coming from a middle-income country where science is not too highly regarded, the GACD has taught me very important lessons. My backpack is now full of ideas and new things to offer and I will start to approach talking to policymakers in a different way.”
Adolfo Rubinstein, GACD Principal Investigator, Argentina
" “The GACD has the huge potential of bringing together people from all continents who are all working on the same issue, with different strategies and goals, yet all trying to tackle chronic diseases. The value will manifest itself in the collaborations and sharing of experiences between researchers.”
Jaime Miranda, GACD Co-Investigator and Former Hypertension Programme Co-Chair, Peru
Research programme close
Each GACD research programme lasts around 3-5 years, depending on the funding awards by each funding agency. At the end of the research programme, the GACD will organise a closing meeting, issue a final report and disseminate the findings to key stakeholders and policy-makers.