Evaluation study of NRP 72

A team from the University of Bern is investigating how interdisciplinary collaboration works in NRP 72 and how it could be strengthened.

​"Close collaboration between researchers with different backgrounds, for example medical and environmental scientists, is unusual and therefore often challenging," says Flurina Schneider. She is investigating how researchers of NRP 72 collaborate with researchers from other disciplines, and with stakeholders from practice. The Steering Committee selected Schneider's study out of several proposals; she was given the go-ahead in June 2018. The study will run until early 2019 and is expected to highlight how interdisciplinary collaboration can be strengthened in the NRP.

Recognising the potential and making the most of it

Interdisciplinarity is particularly pertinent given the subject matter: antimicrobial resistance is a complex issue and any solutions will depend on various disciplines collaborating with each other. Many researchers are embarking on new approaches. Flurina Schneider and her team will now study how they share ideas and organise themselves, what interdisciplinary approaches they are using and how satisfied they are with the results." But we want to go beyond simply describing the status quo," says Schneider. "We want to identify the existing potential together with the researchers and those running the programme, with the aim of highlighting how it could best be realised.

Quick results thanks to a pragmatic approach

The study design is informed by a very pragmatic approach: after studying the existing documents, Schneider's team will conduct Skype interviews with the members of the Steering Committee and leading researchers while undertaking an online survey of other people involved in the programme. Within a short time, this should produce a well-founded basis for elaborating meaningful recommendations for the remaining course of the programme. The recommendations will be presented and debated at the next programme conference on 27/28 March 2019.