Energizing the Research Enterprise at Nonacademic Health Center Schools of Nursing

Publication Title

Journal of Professional Nursing

Publication Date


Document Type





mentoring, research culture, research productivity




Strategic redirection of a university's mission to focus on research is challenging. This article describes an approach to developing a culture of research in a school of nursing (SON) in a nonacademic health center university. Infrastructure changes and committed mentors were developed to move a dormant research culture into one characterized by a growing dynamism of camaraderie and espirit de corps about research and scholarly productivity. To sustain the momentum, a rapid mentor-faculty feedback loop was created so that within a 48-hour time frame, the mentor provided feedback to the faculty member. Timely and iterative feedback prompted discussions that led to more scientifically rigorous proposals and publications. Tailored approaches were adopted for junior and senior faculty. In the first academic year using this approach, publications increased by 144%, and grant proposal submissions increased by 169%, whereas presentations shifted toward more regional and national venues. The increased productivity was maintained over the next 2 years. Building and sustaining a culture of success in research require leadership and vigilance, infrastructure changes, and process-oriented initiatives.