The Importance of Collaborative Science
By Dr. Ralph Hruban
In a recent article in the journal Pancreas (read the abstract here:), Norman Schöffel and colleagues from Goethe-University, Frankfurt,
Germany and the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, report their findings of an analysis of pancreatic cancer (PC) research around the world. In particular, Schöffel and colleagues tried to identify high-quality “collaborative networks” of research. We were pleased to see that Johns Hopkins was identified as the epicenter of collaborative pancreatic cancer research in the United States, and that many of the pancreatic cancer scientists who are current at Johns Hopkins, or who were at Johns Hopkins, were identified as among the most influential collaborators.
Here at Hopkins we firmly believe that collaborative science is the most productive science. As medicine and technologies have advanced, so too have modern science and modern medicine gotten significantly more complex. While it was possible for one person to know an entire field a century ago, today’s fast-paced and ever changing world make this impossible. As a result, collaborations are necessary so that the complexities of an entire field can be studied. Perhaps more importantly, a certain “magic” happens when people with different expertise come together and exchange ideas. Sparks fly as new ideas and approaches are created. There is a power and a beauty to collaborative science, and here at Hopkins in the Sol Goldman Pancreatic Cancer Research Center we embrace it!
From their work Schöffel and colleagues conclude that “… the field of PC is constantly progressing in which the influence of international cooperations on the scientific progress is of increasing importance.” We couldn’t agree more, and we look forward to pushing pancreatic cancer research forward faster than ever so that we can help those fighting this terrible disease!