A Program of Interventional Research Built on Long-Term Collaborations Between a University Nurse Scientist with a Department of Corrections and District Attorney's Office

Wednesday, 24 July 2013: 2:10 PM

Mary W. Byrne, PhD, DNP, MPH, FAAN
School of Nursing and College of Physicians & Surgeons Department of Anesthesiology, Columbia University School of Nursing and College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to describe the advantages of non-traditional private/public partnerships to achieve translational research.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to explain the rationale for a collaboration between a nurse researcher and two criminal justice administrative structures.


Meaningful interventional research requires increasingly complex, cross-disciplinary and sustainable collaborations from question development through translation to practice.


This process evaluation reviews the history, barriers, growth and longevity of an unusual and lasting set of relationships between one University based nurse researcher in maternal child health and two large administrative structures responsible for protection of the public from criminal activity. Literature was reviewed for collaboration, peer affiliation and innovation theories that explained the process. Pivotal activities are identified within this framework across a decade of productive interactions. Multiple measurable outcomes continue to be widely reported.


The unlikely long-term collaborations between a doctorally prepared nurse research scientist at a major private University and two public sector administrations in criminal justice formed a sound foundation for innovative studies linked directly with evidence based practice in community health and justice.  Shared goals and values were motivational from the outset.  Understanding language specific to  disciplines and divergent methodologies used had to be learned over time since disciplinary history, culture and strategies vary much.  Strikingly, the permanence of the developed partnerships was not built on a funding relationship as each had to seek out own resources. Highlights over a decade that provided  mutual professional and social benefit include an unprecedented longitudinal study of  State prison nursery program participants, a shared presentation with additional vested interest representatives at a national conference, and the development and evaluation of a unique alternative to incarceration community residence.


The unusual private/ public partnerships described bring together academic and societal agendas. They  have been created and used over a decade providing a sustainable model for other non-traditional partnering for effective translational research and  public service.