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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 43

From initiation to publication

1 Department of Biochemistry, JSS Medical College, JSS University, Mysore, India
2 Department of Forensic Medicine, Sri Srinivasa Institute of Medical Sciences & Research Institute, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication27-Sep-2012

Correspondence Address:
Prashant Vishwanath
Department of Biochemistry, JSS Medical College, JSS University, Mysore
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2278-344X.101653

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How to cite this article:
Vishwanath P, Menezes RG. From initiation to publication. Int J Health Allied Sci 2012;1:43

How to cite this URL:
Vishwanath P, Menezes RG. From initiation to publication. Int J Health Allied Sci [serial online] 2012 [cited 2020 May 31];1:43. Available from: http://www.ijhas.in/text.asp?2012/1/2/43/101653

The medical research scenario in developing countries has changed drastically and many young and motivated researchers are inculcating the trend of research. This has significantly increased the number of research proposals reaching the Government funding agencies. Although research is being encouraged by the institutions and the Government, there is sufficient time delay between the initial understanding of the research problem and the time the results of the research work are published. In order to conduct a significant research, the researcher initially needs to prepare a synopsis or a project proposal, the format of which differs from each funding authority and even with a particular funding agency the proposal format may differ for each proposal. The time taken for this may vary from 3 to 6 months depending on whether the researcher has been working on a similar project before. A new proposal may take some more time depending on whether adequate numbers of full text references are available. Searching for references could be a frustrating task especially if the researcher is from an institution which has limited access to scientific medical journals. Reviewing from peers and subject experts may take another 1 month or more and the necessary changes need to be incorporated then. After obtaining the institutional ethical committee clearance which takes away another month or more (depending on how frequently the ethical committee meets), the proposal is forwarded to the funding agency which takes its own time to send an acknowledgement. By this time, it would almost be a year before the project would have initially been conceived and the time it is sent to the funding agency. It is better to forget the research proposal after this step and start working on another project if the researcher has any or start preparing another project. The usual time which a funding agency takes to reject may vary from 2 to 6 months and the project rejection letter may be received in 2 to 10 month time. If the project needs a revision, another 6 to 8 months are gone astray. Finally after a period of nearly 2 years or more, the project gets approved with suitable modifications and the principal investigator gets a period of another 2 or 3 years for the study depending on the study duration. Data analysis and interpretation of the results might take another 3 to 6 months after completion of the project.

After the project is complete, a manuscript has to be prepared and communicated to a scientific journal. Publication in a journal might again take time depending on the journal to which the manuscript is submitted. The publication process itself might involve a time frame from anywhere between 3 months and 2 years. So from the time it is thought to work on an innovative idea to the time the authors publish the results of the conceptualized objectives, there could be a gap of 4 to 6 years in our country. The biggest drawback of research in India is the time lag between the conception of the research problem and its publication. The idea which might have been innovative then would have been outdated by the time it is published. It would be beneficial on behalf of the funding agencies to minimize the time taken for the project proposal review, acceptance, and release of timely funds to ensure that research scientists from India keep pace with research elsewhere. Online submission of proposals and communications through e-mail will help reduce the time taken by the agencies and also help in bringing transparency into the system. This step has already been initiated by many funding agencies and it needs to be seen whether this time gap can be reduced significantly to keep pace with research elsewhere.


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