Leadership characteristics predictive of faculty research productivity can be promoted through early-career skill development for residents, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career investigators. 

Residents and Postdoctoral Researchers

Kurahara (2012) completed a 14-year study and reported that residency research requirements program “produced a ten-fold increase in resident publications and faculty involvement in these research projects” (p. 224). Findings suggest that residents who were actively involved in a research project during their residency, were more likely to publish their research later in their career.

Regrettably, this study used a weak definition of research as “case reports, pediatric advocacy, patient safety projects, and patient education, in addition to more traditional hypothesized research projects” (Kurahara, 2012, p. 225). Despite this weakness, the findings of this study support previous research on early-career research involving bolstering later career research productivity and apply those findings to the resident population.

Steiner (2002) performed a similar study looking at the long-term effects of postdoctoral fellowship research training on long-term career research productivity. The study found that those primary care fellows who had “influential mentors were more productive in research early after fellowship” (Steiner, 2002, p. 854). The study also suggested that the amount of time that the mentor and mentee have to devote to the relationship early on are also predictors of research success. These findings further support the inclusion of a strong research mentorship program not only for faculty, but for fellows as well.

Early- or Mid-Career Faculty

For early- or mid-career faculty, the importance of leadership skills shifts away from the expansion of knowledge and skills, towards long-term goal setting. Results from self-assessments found that successful researchers attribute their success to establishing long-term research goals early in their career, recognizing that this was the first step to establishing independence as a research (Downs, 2013).

The findings of this study suggest that while mentoring, substantive knowledge development, and protected writing time are important, recognizing long-term goals are more important (Downs, 2013). The process of becoming a continuum of learning from resident to young faculty requires a recognition of knowledge gaps, filling those gaps with research mentorship and training, and then identifying long- and short-term goals.

Leadership characteristics predictive of faculty research productivity can be promoted through early-career skill development for residents, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career investigators. 

References

  • Downs, C. A., & Morrison, H. W. (2011). Beyond the PhD: Putting the right tools in your research toolbox. Biological research for nursing13(1), 5-14.
  • Kurahara, D. K., Kogachi, K., Yamane, M., Ly, C. L., Foster, J. H., Masaki-Tesoro, T., … & Rudoy, R. (2012). A pediatric residency research requirement to improve collaborative resident and faculty publication productivity. Hawai’i Journal of Medicine & Public Health71(8), 224.
  • Steiner, J. F., Lanphear, B. P., Curtis, P., & Vu, K. O. (2002). Indicators of early research productivity among primary care fellows. Journal of General Internal Medicine17(11), 854-860.