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o b s s r connector monthly

June 19, 2017

Director's Voice

Integrated Neighborhoods are Good for Your Health. There are many benefits from living in more diverse and integrated neighborhoods, and a recently published study funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) provides additional evidence that moving to more integrated neighborhoods has health benefits. Kershaw and colleagues examined 25 years of longitudinal data of 2280 Black participants in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) project to determine the effect of racial residential segregation on blood pressure.  Controlling for potential confounds including age, sex, marital status, education, and neighborhood poverty and density, participants exposed to less segregated neighborhoods experienced over a 1 mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure.  Among those who made more permanent moves to lower segregated neighborhoods (i.e., did not move back to highly segregated neighborhoods), their blood pressure dropped by 5.71 mm Hg on average.

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Hot Topics

Behavioral and Social Sciences in the News

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How to help social and behavioral research findings make their way into practice settings

“Why fund behavioral intervention research if the interventions found effective are not adopted in practice?” This was a recurring question I heard when meeting with various National Institutes of Health (NIH) institute and center directors to seek their input on the OBSSR 2017-21 Strategic Plan. Their perspective is consistent with what our field has acknowledged and worked to address: Health researchers in general – and behavioral and social sciences researchers specifically – cannot be satisfied with leaving our research findings at the water’s edge and hoping these findings will be adopted into practice.
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Open opportunities to do collaborative research

NIH is the world's biggest public funder of biomedical research, investing more than $32 billion each year—and a sizable amount of that money can be tapped by mental health and behavioral science researchers, especially those who are interested in collaborating with other disciplines. Several major initiatives welcome a transdisciplinary perspective, even if on the surface they don't sound terribly psychological. Among them are the All of Us Research Program, the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative, Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) and the Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) program.
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Implications of the 21st Century Cures Act for the Behavioral and Social Sciences at NIH

The 21st Century Cures Act provides funding for key initiatives relevant to the behavioral and social sciences and includes administrative provisions that facilitate health research and increase the privacy protections of research participants. At about the same time as the passage of the Act, OBSSR released its Strategic Plan 2017-2021, which addresses three scientific priorities: (a) improve the synergy of basic and applied behavioral and social sciences research; (b) enhance and promote the research infrastructure, methods, and measures needed to support a more cumulative and integrated approach to behavioral and social sciences; and (c) facilitate the adoption of behavioral and social sciences research findings in health research and in practice.
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In the Know

Annual NIH Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Festival

SAVE THE DATE: December 8, 2017 — NIH Campus, Natcher Conference Center (Bldg. 45). The Annual NIH Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Festival will be hosted by OBSSR and the NIH Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Coordinating Committee. The purpose of the festival is to highlight recently funded behavioral and social sciences research that the NIH supports; bring together behavioral and social scientists within the NIH extramural and intramural communities to network with each other and share scientific ideas; and explore ways to advance behavioral and social sciences research.

June Director's Series Webinar

On Tuesday, June 20, 2017 at 2 pm ET, Melissa L. Anderson, Ph.D., Hearing Psychologist and Clinical Researcher at UMass Medical School, will present on "Deaf ACCESS: Adapting consent through community engagement and state-of-the-art simulation."
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The Science of Caregiving: Bringing Voices Together

NINR in partnership with OBSSR and others is hosting a summit on August 7–8, 2017 on the NIH Campus, Natcher Conference Center (Bldg. 45), that will provide perspectives across the spectrum of caregiving, including the importance of caregiving across the lifespan as well as current and future directions for research to improve the health of patients and caregivers. The keynote speaker is Judy Woodruff of the PBS NewsHour. The event will bring together an audience of researchers, advocates, healthcare providers, educators, and others interested in the science of caregiving. This event is free but space is limited and registration is required.
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Professional Development Workshop 

NCI will host a workshop on August 10-11, 2017, in Rockville, Maryland, to enhance professional development of the next generation of behavioral and social scientists in cancer prevention and control. Participation is free, but registration is required and will be limited. Attendees are responsible for their own travel expenses.
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The Training Institute for Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health (TIDIRH)

In 2017, the institute will utilize a combination of a 3-month online course (six webinar sessions with related assignments) between mid-August and mid-November, and a 2-day in-person training to be held November 30 and December 1, 2017, in North Bethesda, MD. Faculty and guest lecturers will consist of leading experts (practitioners and teachers) in theory, implementation, and evaluation approaches to D&I; creating partnerships and multilevel, transdisciplinary research teams; research design, methods, and analyses appropriate for D&I investigations; and conducting research at different and multiple levels of intervention (e.g., clinical, community, policy). The training is open to researchers with interests in studying D&I across health care, public health, and community settings.
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10th Annual D&I Conference

The 10th Annual Conference on the Science of Dissemination and Implementation in Health, co-hosted by the NIH and AcademyHealth, will be held December 4-6, 2017 in Arlington, VA. This year's theme, A Decade of Progress and the Path Forward, will reflect on the accomplishments of and challenges to the field, and will focus on opportunities ahead.
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Pathways to Prevention Workshop

NIH is hosting the Pathways to Prevention Workshop: Methods for Evaluating Natural Experiments in Obesity to better understand appropriate, high-quality natural experiment research designs in obesity prevention and control. The workshop will take place on December 5–6, 2017 on the NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland. The workshop will be free and open to the public, and attendees can join either in person or via NIH VideoCast. In-person attendance is strongly encouraged.
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All of Us Research Program beta launch

NIH has begun enrolling its first participants as beta testers of the All of Us Research Program. The mission of the All of Us Research Program is to accelerate health research and medical breakthroughs, enabling individualized prevention, treatment, and care for all of us.
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Research Spotlight

The Value of Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences to National Priorities: A Report for the National Science Foundation

The social, behavioral, and economic (SBE) sciences make significant contributions to the National Science Foundation’s mission to advance health, prosperity and welfare, national defense, and progress in science, says a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
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Funding Announcements

RFI: Invitation to Comment on Inclusion in Clinical Research Across the Lifespan

In response to scientific need and a congressional mandate in the 21st Century Cures Act (P.L. 114-255), the NIH is publishing this Notice to solicit input from the wider scientific community and welcomes comments from the public concerning inclusion in research. Responses will be accepted until June 30, 2017. 
How to Submit a Response

U01: Psychological, Behavioral, and Neurocognitive-Focused Ancillary Studies to the Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity in Humans Consortium

The purpose of this FOA is to support an ancillary study grant application(s) to add psychological, behavioral, and/or neurocognitive assessments to the data collection in adults (> 18 years of age) enrolled at the clinical sites in the Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity in Humans Consortium (MoTrPAC) supported by the NIH Common Fund. This ancillary study FOA complements the parent MoTrPAC study by supporting research to elucidate the individual level psychological, behavioral, and neurocognitive characteristics that explain variation in individual response and adherence to a program of physical activity. The goal of the research supported by this FOA is to characterize individual differences in response to exercise over the course of the MoTrPAC protocol to identify novel treatment targets and inform personalized physical activity intervention approaches in the future.
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10th Annual D&I Conference Call for Abstracts

Submission Deadline: July 25, 2017 at 5:00 PM Eastern Time

The abstract solicitation and conference structure have been designed to focus thinking and discussion on the highest priorities for dissemination and implementation science now and in the future to help optimize health and health care in the U.S. and elsewhere. Given the breadth of the field and the importance of maximizing opportunities for participants to follow consistent themes throughout the concurrent sessions of the meeting, ten thematic tracks are included to organize the conference agenda.The call for abstracts for this year's D&I Conference is now open and will close July 25 at 5:00 p.m. ET.
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