Johns Hopkins has long championed the role of interdisciplinary cooperation as a means of solving the world’s most fundamental questions and its most complex problems. However, universities are structured in ways that can impede the impulse of faculty to mount interdisciplinary endeavors, and so we must intentionally create conditions that encourage creative collisions at the crossroads of our divisions.
The last year and a half saw a number of such collaborative initiatives move forward, some in which we had made prior investments and others in areas entirely new. And as is appropriate for a strategic priority, we have begun to harness data to measure our progress. Among the early insights: The percentage of cross-divisional publications and grant proposals has increased in recent years, though both also showed a slight decline in the last measured year. In 2015, our schools are developing investments in new research programs and reviewing barriers to new collaborative educational programs to ensure that we are holding true to our aspirations in this area.