20 Jun Dr. Hinson’s Top 3 Tips on Making Your Research Accessible
Since The Good Doctors are academics working a business world, we spend a lot of time thinking about how to translate our research to a wide range of audiences. With this in mind, I’ve put together my list of top tips for taking your research from the classroom to the boardroom (or chatroom). Presenting your findings in a public forum is an excellent way to expand your research impact, but with the ever-increasing use of social media to communicate, options abound for growing interest in your research. Sitting on your own research island (see above cartoon) is not a sustainable research approach.
As research professionals, we have pooled our collective knowledge to share a few easy tips for increasing interest in your research, while growing your professional network.
- Write a blog: This may seem slightly self-referential, but an excellent method for democratizing your research, and making it accessible to a difference audience, is to start a blog. Blogs are naturally more informal, and while it may be a challenging exercise to alter the language and method of presentation for your research (think less specific details and more broader themes), you could find an audience for your ideas outside of your narrower field of research or profession.
- Tweet about it: Twitter is an excellent way to stay connected with a wide network of people who may share similar areas of interest. It takes some effort to build a Twitter profile, and to find other people and organizations who may make connections to your specific or broad focus. Participating in the Twitter ‘conversation’ keeps you up to date on new research or different perspectives, and shows your willingness to engage in a range of forums. Limiting your perspectives to 140 characters is certainly a challenge, but will also force you to think about how your research can be effective, even when limited.
- Join professional organizations: While you are happy to present your research at conferences around the country, what other organizations are attending these conferences and can you make a research connection to their interests. Even within your own home town are there groups – local social groups or political groups which may be interested in organizing a presentation or discussion group around your findings. Connecting with and presenting to these groups will not only improve your communication skills, but will widen the impact of your research.
Being a successful researcher takes a great deal of effort – and as we often mention, the work does not stop once the research is complete. In taking these few easy steps to broaden your research impact, you could find new research opportunities, possibilities for publication or future funding. Building a diverse and expansive network will help you form professional relationships which could also lead to future collaborations. Democratizing your findings by engaging in different forums, both public and online, is an important part of making your research accessible and also furthering your professional development.