(Not So) Dangerous Liaisons: A Framework for Evaluating Collaborative Research Projects

Pinar Oztop, Frank Loesche, Diego S. Maranan, Kathryn B. Francis, Vaibhav Tyagi, Ilaria Torre


With advances in research environments and the accompanying increase in the complexity of research projects, the range of skills required to carry out research calls for an increase in interdisciplinary and collaborative work. CogNovo, a doctoral training program for 25 PhD students, provided a unique opportunity to observe and analyze collaborative processes. We propose a process-oriented framework for understanding research collaborations along two dimensions: interpersonal and project-related. To illustrate the utility of this process-oriented framework, we apply the framework matrix to several collaborations that emerged within the CogNovo program. The framework that we introduce has several advantages over existing metrics. Firstly, we offer a process-oriented—as opposed to product-oriented—evaluation of interdisciplinary and collaborative endeavors. Secondly, we propose a means of assessment that preserves the distinctive profile (or “fingerprint”) of a given collaborative project, thus capturing the uniqueness of each project and its environment.


collaboration fingerprint; collaborative framework; group work; interdisciplinary research; organizational team performance; research assessment.

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