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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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BUILDING INFRASTRUCTURE for
INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATIVE
RESEARCH in the SOCIAL and
BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES

SUMMARY OF A WORKSHOP

Beryl Lieff Benderly and Lois Peterson Kent, Rapporteurs

USNC/Psychology Workshop Planning Committee on Building Infrastructure for
International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences

Board on International Scientific Organizations

Policy and Global Affairs

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
                         OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS

Washington, D.C.

www.nap.edu

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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THE NATIONALACADEMIES PRESS    500 Fifth Street, NW    Washington, DC 20001

NOTICE:    The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance.

This workshop was supported by Grant No. 201300148 between the National Academy of Sciences and the Spencer Foundation. Additional support was provided by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0908053. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project.

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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

Advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering, and Medicine

The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences.

The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., is president of the National Academy of Engineering.

The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Victor J. Dzau is president of the Institute of Medicine.

The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council.

www.national-academies.org

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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USNC/PSYCHOLOGY WORKSHOP PLANNING COMMITTEE ON
BUILDING INFRASTRUCTURE FOR INTERNATIONAL
COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH
IN THE SOCIAL AND BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES

OSCAR A. BARBARIN, III (Cochair), Tulane University

JUDITH V. TORNEY-PURTA (Cochair), University of Maryland, College Park

MERRY BULLOCK, American Psychological Association

PAMELA E. FLATTAU, Institute for Defense Analyses

SONIA SUCHDAY, Pace University

CHARLES M. SUPER, University of Connecticut

BARBARA TVERSKY, Columbia University, Teachers College

JEFFREY ZACKS, Washington University in St. Louis

Staff

KATHIE BAILEY, Director

PAMELA GAMBLE, Administrative Associate

KARUMUNA A. KAIJAGE, Program Officer (until October 2013)

LOIS PETERSON KENT, Senior Program Officer (after October 2013)

LYNELLE VIDALE, Senior Program Assistant (until October 2013)

 

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
×

U.S. NATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR PSYCHOLOGY

SONIA SUCHDAY, Chair, Pace University

CHUANSHENG CHEN, University of California, Irvine

PAMELA E. FLATTAU, IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute

ROBERTA KLATZKY, Carnegie Mellon University

ANN MASTEN, University of Minnesota

VALERIE REYNA, Cornell University

CHARLES M. SUPER, University of Connecticut

JUDITH V. TORNEY-PURTA, University of Maryland

DANNY WEDDING, Alliant International University

GAIL WYATT, University of California, Los Angeles

JEFFREY ZACKS, Washington University in St. Louis

Ex-officio members

OSCAR A. BARBARIN, International Union of Psychological Science Executive Committee, Tulane University

JOHN HILDEBRAND, Foreign Secretary of the National Academy of Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson

Society Liaisons

LONNIE R. SHERROD, Society for Research in Child Development

NELSON COWAN, Psychonomic Society (Carnegie Mellon University)

ALAN KRAUT, Association for Psychological Science

MERRY BULLOCK, American Psychological Association

Staff

KATHIE BAILEY, Director

PAMELA GAMBLE, Administrative Associate

KARUMUNA A. KAIJAGE, Program Officer (until October 2013)

LOIS PETERSON KENT, Senior Program Officer (after October 2013)

ESTER SZTEIN, Assistant Director

LYNELLE VIDALE, Senior Program Assistant (until October 2013)

 

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
×

BOARD ON INTERNATIONAL SCIENTIFIC ORGANIZATIONS

TILAHUN YILMA (Chair), University of California, Davis

ROBERT CHEN, CIESIN, Columbia University

DANIEL GOROFF, Alfred Sloan Foundation

LISA GRANT LUDWIG, University of California, Irvine

WILLIAM H. HOOKE, American Meteorological Society

C. BRADLEY MOORE, University of California, Berkeley

LUENY MORELL, Lueny Morell and Associates

J. BRUCE OVERMIER, University of Minnesota

JAY S. PEARLMAN, J&F Enterprise (retired)

KAREN STRIER, University of Wisconsin

Ex-officio members

JOHN HILDEBRAND, Foreign Secretary of the National Academy of Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson

DOV JARON, International Council for Science Executive Board (until September 2014), Drexel University

KENNEDY REED, International Council for Science Executive Board (until September 2014), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Staff

KATHIE BAILEY, Director

ESTER SZTEIN, Assistant Director

PAMELA GAMBLE, Administrative Assistant

Page viii Cite
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
×

Preface and Acknowledgments

Enhancing the extent and quality of collaborations among scientists from different cultural and national settings is a matter of considerable importance to the National Research Council. This topic relates directly to the expertise found in the U.S. National Committee (USNC) for the International Union of Psychological Science (IUPsyS). The USNC/IUPsyS is the only committee under the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on International Scientific Organizations that is related to the behavioral and social sciences. About 10 years ago, because of the resources present in its membership, this committee found itself uniquely positioned to contribute to understanding the process of international collaboration and steps that might be taken to enhance it.

The USNC/IUPsyS organized a workshop entitled International Collaborations in the Behavioral and Social Sciences, held in 2006. That workshop’s report, released in 2008, established in compelling terms the value of cross-national research collaboration in an increasingly interdependent world of science, policy, and practice. It highlighted the benefits of international collaboration in improving social and behavioral science research. However, nearly every speaker referred to barriers and challenges in the collaborative research process. These were spelled out in detail in responses to a pre-workshop survey from 26 project leaders who had worked cross-nationally.

In 2012 the USNC/IUPsyS held a meeting to set its future agenda of projects. Members who had attended the 2006 workshop argued that the fostering of international collaboration remained an important but unfinished agenda item. In particular, problems such as the participation of early-career behavioral and social scientists in these collaborations had been raised, but few widely applicable solutions had been suggested. Pressure to limit the time spent earning a doctorate, as well as promotion and tenure policies, still discouraged participation by young scholars in cross-national research at the very time they were laying the foundations for their future careers. Other recurring issues related to training, to negotiating the institutional review board process, and to dissemination of findings. Since 2006,

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
×

additional issues had been raised by advances in data sharing and digital data collection. For example, some psychologists have expressed concern about the validity of generalizations drawn from the nonrepresentative samples that have been facetiously described as WEIRD (from Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic societies)1.

On a more serious note, recurring surveys from the National Science Foundation showed that a relatively small proportion of social and behavioral scientists reported participating in international collaborative projects (compared with physical and life scientists and with mathematicians and computer scientists). USNC/IUPsyS was again uniquely positioned to make a contribution.

Consultations began with potential funders, with pivotal individuals in major professional organizations, and with scholars who had coordinated successful international collaborative projects. The National Research Council appointed a Planning Committee to organize the 2013 workshop, which we were appointed to chair. The intent was to move beyond identifying and discussing the problems associated with international collaboration (since the first workshop had largely accomplished this aim). Instead, we set out to identify existing approaches, policies, and infrastructure elements that might overcome some of the most serious impediments standing in the way of successful international collaboration. The workshop would engage scholars with experience in cross-national collaborations, individuals from professional associations, university administrators, and potential funders (in the public sector and foundations). We invited participants from outside of the United States to broaden our understanding of potential solutions. Although the participants came from developed countries, many had significant experience involving international collaborators from a wide geographic range, including but not limited to the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, and Oceania.

Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences took place September 22–24, 2013, at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C. Over the course of two and a half days, 50 individuals from universities and federal agencies, professional organizations, and other parties with interests in international collaboration in the behavioral and social sciences and education made presentations and participated in discussions. They came from diverse fields, including cognitive, developmental, educational, and organizational psychologies; comparative education; educational anthropology; sociology; the health sciences; international development studies; higher education administration; international exchange; and human development.

Our goal in this effort has been to identify ways to reduce impediments and to increase access to cross-national research collaborations among a broad range of American scholars in the behavioral and social sciences (and education), especially early-career scholars. This effort began and ended with a great deal of optimism. The

_________________

1 Joseph Henrich, Steven J. Heine, and Ara Norenzayan (2010). The weirdest people in the world? Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 33, pp. 61–83. doi:10.1017/S0140525X0999152X.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
×

optimism is justified by the availability of creative solutions to problems of training, preparation, support, and communication that have often seemed nearly insurmountable. In this report, we want to give life to the solutions and strategies offered by the distinguished group of participants who gave generously of their ideas and time. We hope that these ideas will be seriously considered and, if found to be effective, widely implemented.

The USNC, of which we are members, represents U.S. scientists to the IUPsyS, while the parent Board on International Scientific Organizations represents U.S. scientists to the International Council for Science. We believe that international scientific organizations such as these and their international scientific congresses provide an important opportunity for fostering and developing relationships among potential collaborators. In particular, travel grants for graduate students and early-career faculty to attend these congresses give them an unparalleled opportunity to see their research in an international perspective.

This document has been prepared by the workshop rapporteurs as a factual summary of what occurred at the workshop. The language used in this volume is that of the rapporteurs and is based on a transcript of the workshop sessions and on written documentation summarized during the sessions. The planning committee’s role was limited to planning and convening the workshop. The views contained in the report are those of individual workshop participants and do not necessarily represent positions of the workshop participants as a whole, the planning committee, or the National Academies.

This workshop summary is the result of substantial effort and collaboration among several organizations and individuals. We extend a sincere thanks to each member of the planning committee for their contributions in preparing the framework for discussion, developing the participants’ list, and thoughtfully participating in the sessions. The project was made possible by financial support from the National Science Foundation and the Spencer Foundation. We also recognize the assistance of the chair of the U.S. National Committee for Psychological Science (Sonia Suchday), the program officer (Karumuna Kaijage), and the program assistant (Lynelle Vidale) in the organization and holding of the workshop. We appreciate the assistance of Ester Sztein and Lois Peterson Kent, both Board on International Scientific Organizations staff, in the editing and production of the report.

This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Academies’ Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for quality and objectivity. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the process.

We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report: Carole Ames, Michigan State University; Robert Chen, Columbia University; Frederick Leong, Michigan State University; and Charles Super, University of Connecticut.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2014. Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences: Summary of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18970.
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Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the content of the report, nor did they see the final draft before its release. The review of this report was overseen by J. Bruce Overmier, University of Minnesota. Appointed by the National Academies, he was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the rapporteurs and the institution.

Judith Torney-Purta
University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

Oscar Barbarin
Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana

Cochairs of the Planning Committee on Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences

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In recent years, as science becomes increasingly international and collaborative, the importance of projects that involve research teams and research subjects from different countries has grown markedly. Such teams often cross disciplinary, cultural, geographic and linguistic borders as well as national ones. Successfully planning and carrying out such efforts can result in substantial advantages for both science and scientists. The participating researchers, however, also face significant intellectual, bureaucratic, organizational and interpersonal challenges.

Building Infrastructure for International Collaborative Research in the Social and Behavioral Sciences is the summary of a workshop convened by the National Research Council's Committee on International Collaborations in Social and Behavioral Sciences in September 2013 to identify ways to reduce impediments and to increase access to cross-national research collaborations among a broad range of American scholars in the behavioral and social sciences (and education), especially early career scholars. Over the course of two and a half days, individuals from universities and federal agencies, professional organizations, and other parties with interests in international collaboration in the behavior and social sciences and education made presentations and participated in discussions. They came from diverse fields including cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, comparative education, educational anthropology, sociology, organizational psychology, the health sciences, international development studies, higher education administration, and international exchange.

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