Retreats to Stimulate Cross-Disciplinary Translational Research Collaborations: Medical University of South Carolina CTSA Pilot Project Program Initiative



To stimulate the formation of new cross-disciplinary translational research team collaborations and innovative pilot projects, the Medical University of South Carolina’s (MUSC) CTSA—South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research (SCTR) Institute—has initiated biannual scientific retreats often with speed dating style networking sessions. The themes of the retreats are cross-disciplinary, address unmet medical needs in South Carolina (SC) and beyond, stimulate formation of new cross-disciplinary teams, and are anticipated to generate pilot project and extramural grant applications related to novel translational research discoveries, technologies, and methodologies. The retreat format is designed to stimulate new research ideas and exchange in small groups to develop new research projects. The retreats are complemented by the SCTR Institute Pilot Project Program funds to support innovative pilot projects that emanate from the retreats. This chapter describes the design of the retreats, scientific impacts such as novel scientific collaborations and projects that the retreats have stimulated, challenges, and strategies for success.


CTSA Pilot project program Cross-disciplinary team formation Collaboration development Scientific retreats Scientific impacts 



This work was supported in part by the South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research (SCTR) Institute, with an academic home at the Medical University of South Carolina, through a Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant Numbers UL1 TR000062 and UL1 TR001450. The contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH or NCATS.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.South Carolina Clinical and Translational Research InstituteMedical University of South CarolinaCharlestonUSA
  2. 2.Epidemiology and Biostatistics DepartmentUniversity of South CarolinaColumbiaUSA
  3. 3.Strategic Research InitiativesMedical University of South CarolinaCharlestonUSA

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