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Center for the Advancement of Team Science, Analytics and Systems Thinking in Health Services Research (CATALYST)

CATALYST is a center within The Ohio State University College of Medicine focused on advancing research and discovery at Ohio State in the delivery of health services across the continuum of care using a team science approach. As an innovative and independent center within the College of Medicine, CATALYST is focused on providing a well-recognized hub for health services and implementation science research efforts within the college.


To catalyze faculty at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center to engage in meaningful health services research (HSR) and implementation science.

In achieving this mission, CATALYST seeks to complement the mission of The Ohio State University College of Medicine “to improve people’s lives through innovation in research” by ensuring that the work of research faculty is impactful for the organization and the populations they serve. CATALYST is being created as a means of fostering a collaborative culture of research while providing the environment that supports success.


To develop the infrastructure necessary to ensure extramural funding, improve the quality of scholarship, develop faculty in the area of health services and implementation science research, and increase the educational capacity of the institution while serving to extend the research, education and clinical enterprises of The Ohio State University College of Medicine.


  • Success through collaboration and sustained productivity
  • Leadership with integrity and personal accountability
  • Respect of diversity of people and ideas through openness and mutual trust
  • Innovation through creativity
  • Passion in what we do by engaging with each other through kindness and fun


Guided by its mission, CATALYST aims to:
  • Provide a shared HSR infrastructure to provide expedited access to highly trained research support staff and data
  • Promote a team science-based, collaborative environment in which faculty and postdoctoral researchers are highly mentored by successful HSR faculty to be highly productive (both in papers and grants)
  • Enhance the quality and quantity of published research in HSR and implementation science
  • Identify opportunities for extending the educational mission of the College of Medicine
  • Improve the success rate of applications for funding through initial scoping, review and critical assessment so as to improve submitted proposals

What is T3 research?

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), T3 research is focused on the knowledge translation interface between what we know in clinical science and what we do in clinical care. To that end, CATALYST has adopted four pillars that serve to provide a structure upon which health services and implementation science research can grow at The Ohio State University: 1) open science, 2) health information technology, 3) comparative effectiveness research, 4) the learning healthcare system.

Open science: rigor, reproducibility and transparency
CATALYST seeks to explore the opportunities for research associated with the ongoing discussions at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) related to open science, rigor, reproducibility and transparency. In both the design of our studies and the focus of our science, we seek to speak with a voice, both locally and nationally, on how we might move these issues forward in T3 translational science.

Health information technology (HIT)
Health information technology (HIT) is a potential force multiplier for the delivery of health services. CATALYST seeks to leverage the leadership that OSU has in this domain, particularly in the areas of clinical decision support and patient engagement.

Comparative effectiveness research (CER)
As a component of the science associated with exploring variation in health services delivery, there is a concomitant issue of heterogeneity of treatment effect. What works for one person or group may not work for another, or they may experience different outcomes. CATALYST has a focus on exploring these differences in experience using mixed methods research designs.

The learning healthcare system
Funding agencies see the need for programmatic activity that is engaged in design and systems engineering efforts to build better care. CATALYST serves as a laboratory that enables multiple develop-test-revise iterations of promising design features and subsystems of the sort that could normally be found in larger-scale engineering projects. It does so based on a systems model grounded in how feedback of information can be used to shape the development of robust practices that could lead to improved outcomes across the care continuum.