Building Research Infrastructure: The Development of a Technical Assistance Group-Service Center at an RCMI

Monica R. Lininger, Christine Kirby, Kelly A. Laurila, Indrakshi Roy, Marcelle Coder, Catherine R. Propper, Robert T. Trotter, Julie A. Baldwin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As one of the Research Centers for Minority Institutions (RCMI), the Southwest Health Equity Research Collaborative (SHERC) worked over the first five-year period of funding to foster the advancement of Early Stage Investigators, enhance the quality of health disparities research, and increase institution research capacity in basic Biomedical, Behavioral, and/or Clinical research; all priorities of RCMIs. In year 4, the Technical Assistance Group-Service Center (TAG-SC) was created to help achieve these goals. The TAG-SC provides one-on-one investigator project development support, including research design, data capture, and analysis. Successful implementation of the TAG-SC was tracked using Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap), a secure, web-based software platform allowing for immediate tracking and evaluation processes. In the first two years, 86 tickets were submitted through the REDCap system for methodological support by TAG-SC experts (faculty and staff) for assistance with health-equity related research, primarily SHERC and externally funded Social/Behavioral research projects. The TAG-SC increased the research capacity for investigators, especially within the SHERC. In this manuscript, we describe the methods used to create the TAG-SC and the REDCap tracking system and lessons learned, which can help other RCMIs interested in creating a similar service center offering an innovative way to build methodological infrastructure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number191
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023


  • REDCap
  • behavioral and social sciences
  • early stage investigator
  • methodological support
  • research infrastructure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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