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Joint Research Practices Group Receives Honorable Mention for Penn’s Champion in Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Award

Eight members of the Joint Research Practices working group
Eight members of the Joint Research Practices working group
Several members of the JRP led a workshop at PAIR and CHIBE’s joint Roybal Retreat last October. The team discussed the experiments conducted by Penn dermatologist Dr. Albert Klingman at the Holmesburg Prison and facilitated breakout sessions to discuss practical challenges in conducting research equitably and potential strategies to overcome these barriers.

The Joint Research Practices (JRP) working group, an effort led by members of CHIBE and PAIR, has received an honorable mention for Penn Medicine’s Champion in Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Award, which was doled out at the Office of Inclusion and Diversity’s Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium.

JRP is a group working on developing and disseminating best practices and guidelines for the conduct of inclusive and anti-racist research that advances the science and practice of health equity. Its work is evidence-based, community-informed, and programmatically focused with the aim of building digital resources and codes of conduct detailing best practices for carrying out research at the two centers. Some of its focus areas include: research team structure and composition; engagement with under-represented, underserved communities; participant eligibility, representativeness, recruitment, retention, and use of incentives; measurement and reporting of patient characteristics including race and ethnicity; and dissemination of results.

The directors of CHIBE and PAIR, Kevin Volpp, MD, PhD, and Scott Halpern, MD, PhD, respectively, nominated the group for the award, commending them for facilitating important discussions among faculty and staff, leading a workshop at a retreat with more than 125 participants, conducting literature review of wide-ranging topics such as patient-centered care and using payment in clinical research, and creating resources for researchers looking to conduct inclusive and equitable research.

“The JRP is comprised of volunteer staff and faculty,” Drs. Halpern and Volpp wrote in their nomination. “This expansive body of work is being pushed forward because of the collaborative and determined spirit of each team member. They are fiercely and fearlessly working to overcome long-standing structural and operational barriers that make it difficult for researchers to conduct equitable and inclusive research. They are approaching these challenges with an unusual combination of pragmatism and unrelenting hope, offering practical solutions and pushing all of us to do better every day. It is impossible not to hear their cry for change, and it is inspiring to hear leaders across centers answer their call to action with concrete commitments to elevate and amplify these efforts. To have research-minded people approach these problems with the same rigor and reflection that they approach their own research portfolios – it is a gift.”

The current and/or founding members of the JRP are:

  • Lizzie Bair, MS
  • Shira Blady
  • Emma Britez Ferrante
  • Caleb Hearn, MPH
  • Richard James, MLIS, MBe
  • Rachel Kohn, MD, MSCE (co-leader)
  • Adina Lieberman, MPH
  • Adam Mussell, MA
  • Dorothy Sheu, MPH
  • Leo Thorbecke
  • Jingsan Zhu, MS, MBA (co-leader)

Learn more about Penn Medicine’s Champion in Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Award here.