ICTR Pilot Awards Support Community-Engaged Research, Collaboration

UW ICTR has announced the 2021 Pilot Awards; 14 projects were funded totaling $1.02 million that encompass community engaged and health services research, novel methods, and collaborations with our partners at Marshfield Clinic. Christine Sorkness, ICTR Senior Associate Executive Director, comments,

As always, the ICTR pilot awards team is indebted to the scientific and community reviewers of these applications, especially during these challenging times. We are grateful for the expertise and commitment. Thank you!

RFAs covered in this announcement include those for Clinical & Community Outcomes Research (CCOR, five awards), Novel Methods (four awards), Stakeholder & Patient Engaged Research (SPER, three awards), and Marshfield Clinic/Marshfield Clinic Research Institute-UW Madison Collaborative Research (two awards). The Translational Basic & Clinical Research Awards will be announced separately in June.

List of 2021 Pilot Awards

ICTR is funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), through a Clinical and Translational Science Award most recently renewed in 2017. Pilot awards supporting community-engaged research are also supported via a strategic grant to ICTR from the Wisconsin Partnership Program (WPP). Maureen Smith, ICTR Director for Community Academic Partnerships and Director of the Health Innovation Program, notes,

Maureen Smith, MD, PhD, MPHThe community-partnered pilot projects included in the 2021 awards reflect the shared mission of ICTR and WPP to improve health and advance health equity in Wisconsin and are especially strong in addressing health disparities and contemporary health issues, developing new interdisciplinary teams, and supporting early career investigators.

Our partnership with WPP is a key component of the ICTR Strategic Vision to Improve the Health of All in Wisconsin.

Kate Judge, Program Manager for ICTR Community Academic Partnerships and part of the Pilot Awards program, elaborates,

The outstanding community-partnered research teams selected are responding to Wisconsin’s current health challenges including Black infant mortality; mental health of school-aged children; young adults with cancer; incarcerated adults; rural telehealth for seniors; opioid addiction; and consequences of the COVID epidemic in Wisconsin. It’s a privilege to support a new generation of dedicated researchers; all are first-time pilot awardees and most are junior investigators.

The 2021 awards also continue the ICTR record of playing a key role in accelerating basic discovery research, developing novel methods, and promoting partnerships with our partner institution, Marshfield Clinic. Peggy Hatfield, Co-Manager of the Pilot Awards Program and Administrative Director for Workforce Development, adds,

We are excited to co-fund two pilot projects this year led by UW-Madison & Marshfield Co-PIs. These projects echo values important to both ICTR partners, namely fostering research careers of junior investigators and facilitating collaborative translational teams. We look forward to celebrating the innovative project outcomes from these and all our 2021 awardees.