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BU Profiles, an open source Profiles Research Networking Software, is a tool that supports research networking and expertise searches. It enables individuals (either internal or external to BU) to locate researchers by subject matter, name, institution, department, division, faculty, etc. This RN tool is a new way to network and collaborate, find potential mentors, search for relevant panel members and advisory board expertise, evaluate research trends by investigator, and broadly surveys the community at large. BU Profiles offers traditional contact information while also revealing how individuals are connected to others in the larger research community by providing sophisticated, but user-friendly, data-mining tools. The BU CTSI sponsored Profiles is a customized version of the Harvard Catalyst Profiles (UL1TR001102) instance.
A core goal for the CTSI is to use the resources and expertise of our hub to promote the highest quality and most efficient clinical and translational research. We believe this is best achieved through a Team Science approach, where investigators with complementary and supplementary disciplines engage and interact in networks of teams. Team Science is a critical success factor of the CTSI and embedded across all aspects of the program, including training and collaboration with stakeholders and the community. We pioneered the implementation of BU Profiles, a tool that helps identify individual scientific expertise of BU faculty to facilitate collaboration and link BU faculty to scientists at all the 60 CTSI-funded universities.
Research Networking (RN) commonly employs online applications to discover and use research and scholarly information about people and resources. RN applications, also known as tools, serve as knowledge management systems for researchers regardless of whether users work in academic institutions, foundations, government, or in industry.
RN tools connect institutional systems, broad research networks, public research data, and restricted data by collecting accessible information from a wide range of sources and then aggregate and organize the information as expertise profiles for faculty, investigators, scholars, clinicians, community partners, and facilities. RN tools also help people find and create new collaborations and enable team science to address new or existing research challenges by making information about researchers, expertise, and resources rapidly accessible and searchable.