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The process of participating in academic interdisciplinary health services team research: A grounded theory investigation

Kimberly A Galt, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to develop a grounded theory about how individuals participate in academic interdisciplinary health services research teams. This study was guided by the central question: What theory explains how individuals participate in academic interdisciplinary health services research teams? Recent funding policies have shifted to support team research in federally sponsored research programs, such as the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Building Research Infrastructure Capacity program (BRIC). Academic researchers must learn new ways of conducting research: shifting from the independent scientist to interdisciplinary teams. ^ The data were collected from interviewing 29 individual participants; (a) four health services research teams who received a federal BRIC grant at their universities from the AHRQ, one long standing non-BRIC health services research team, and the key program sponsor administrator; (b) written documents including the original funding proposal, first year progress reports, published abstracts about the BRIC award; and (c) university web sites. Analysis followed grounded theory procedures. Open, axial and selective coding was performed. The substantive emergent theory was a process model of individual participatory leadership in academic interdisciplinary health services research teams. ^ Individuals participate in academic interdisciplinary health services research teams through a process of participatory leadership. Participatory leadership is how academic interdisciplinary health services research teams form, develop, and maintain their work processes. It is how these teams resolve methodological, disciplinary, and expert content conflicts. The research process is slowed by role clarification and team alignment efforts, time required to get to acceptance of differences in methodological and disciplinary perspectives, and the shared decision making that occurs. While methodological and disciplinary conflicts are inevitable, successful teams recognize, accept, value and respect the individual differences in methodological and disciplinary orientations. Team members develop a common understanding of the team goals; can describe what value each other bring, and how this supports the research process. The research process moves forward and results in productive, shared research products. ^

Subject Area

Psychology, Social|Health Sciences, General

Recommended Citation

Galt, Kimberly A, "The process of participating in academic interdisciplinary health services team research: A grounded theory investigation" (2009). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3386837.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3386837

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