February 12, 2013
New presentation on International Research Collaboration
The Global Research Forum, held at the University of North Texas, invited key university administrators, international research funding agencies, and doctoral students to establish an understanding of how to expand mutually beneficial global research cooperation, and support research-active faculty and graduate students with global research aspirations.
Maresi Nerad, director of CIRGE, was one of the panelists to discuss the core elements of a research report, published by the National Academy of Science in 2011, Examining Core Elements of International Research Collaboration.
In her talk, she highlighted the main points of strengthening international research collaboration among universities. Trust is imperative in mutually beneficial international collaboration, however, this process takes time and Dr. Nerad warned that the collaboration via virtual platforms could be unsustainable without prior personal acquaintance.
In addition, Dr. Nerad elaborated that research collaborations involving students and postdocs require a comprehensive assessment framework. In her opinion, the formative assessment work should start from the beginning in order to avoid tension that may be produced given the organizational structures, programs, and cultural behavior.
In this sense, the director of CIRGE was emphatic that graduate students and future researchers need to be prepared for international collaboration and need to be given room after returning from abroad to debrief on their experiences, and integrate the new knowledge and lessons learned into ongoing teaching and learning at their home campus. This includes integrating international students as equal partners on the home campus.