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Fostering practice-oriented and use-inspired science in biomedical research
David Cassiman
Bruno Cassiman
2020, Research Policy, 49(2), pp.103900
In contexts where the abstract and predictive outcomes of theory-driven research from the lab provide little insight for solving practical problems, use-inspired research is argued to shape advances in science by leading more directly to practice-oriented outcomes. We show that in the biomedical sector, basic research conducted by clinical scientists is significantly more likely to exploit prior insights from the applied literature, and triggers relatively more applied and industrial follow-on research compared to a sample of randomly matched articles. However, clinical scientists’ engagement in the development of this type of practice-oriented and use-inspired basic research is limited due to the intensity of their clinical obligations and patient care. The allocation of a unique fellowship that partly releases these clinical scientists from their clinical burden fosters the development of practice-oriented and use-inspired basic science. These clinical scientists tend to publish more and shift their focus towards the development of scientific basic research that integrates insights from bench and bedside.
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