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Talking To Your Center:Building A Project Team

February 2008

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Topic and Audience

Training Overview:

  • This presentation is for Cancer Center teams that are deciding how best to Connect with caBIG™. We recommend that Leads use it as a reference for identifying the different stakeholders to engage in the process and establish what their roles may be. Excerpts of this presentation, supplemented by other documents, will then help in communicating with each of those groups.

  • Topics:

    • The Vision of caBIG™

    • Requirements for Getting Connected with caBIG™

    • Center caBIG™ Team Roles and Responsibilities

    • Summary and Next Steps

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Personalized Molecular MedicineA Complex Continuum

Molecular Medicine


Clinical Research


Molecular Biology

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caBIG™ Overview

caBIG™ is an information network enabling all constituencies in the cancer community – researchers, clinicians, patients – to share data and knowledge to accelerate the discovery of new diagnostics and therapeutics, and improve patient outcomes.

caBIG™ Vision

  • Adapt or Build tools for collecting, analyzing, integrating and disseminating information associated with cancer research and care.

  • Connect the cancer research community through a shareable, interoperable infrastructure.

  • Deploy and Extend standard rules and a common language to more easily share information.

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caBIG™: From Pilot to Enterprise

  • An unprecedented effort to connect people, organizations, and data throughout the cancer research community

  • Pilot Phase (2003-2007)

    • 190 participating organizations

    • 300 software components

    • 40+ end-user applications

    • caGrid network that “connects” everyone

    • 45+ peer-reviewed publications

  • Initial Deployment (2007-2008)

    • 43 of 63 NCI Designated Cancer Centers16 of 16 NCI Community Cancer Centers

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caBIG™ Benefits

Basic Researcher


Cancer Center Director


Clinical Researcher

  • Facilitate collaborative research.

  • Increase the research potential from data sets and accelerate the extension to diagnosis and treatment.

  • Get access to and share biomedical research data, within our Center and with collaborators.

  • Learn about the tools and resources to share, and promote our research with others.

The increased data sharing made possible by Getting Connected with caBIG™ increases the effectiveness and efficiency of cancer research, helping individual scientists, the cancer research community, and – ultimately – the patients.

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Topic 2: GettingConnected with caBIG™

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caBIG™ Deployment Expectations

  • Deploy a functional caGrid node that will connect to the national infrastructure to enable data sharing

  • Meaningfully deploy caBIG™ tools and infrastructure through adopting and/or adapting applications

  • Participate in developingcaBIG™ Data Sharing and Security Framework

  • Final Goal: Use caBIG™ infrastructure and tools to promote collaborative research within and between Centers

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Defining the Center’s caBIG™ Goals

What data will we share?

With whom do we need to share data?

caBIG™ Goals

(What software tools can help?)

How do we want to improve our data collection and management?

How do we want to streamline our data analysis?

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Creating an Implementation Plan

Having defined data to share

Having evaluated observations from

the Capability Report

What tools will we implement?

How will we do it?

What resources will we need?

Who will be involved?

What are our desired outcomes?

Having identified improvements to data collection and management

Having targeted how to streamline data analysis

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Develop data policies and security

Build/modify data models

  • Deploy a caGrid Node

  • Install caBIG™ compatible software

  • Meaningfully share data

Develop processes and procedures to support new software

Provide technical development for

technologists and train end users

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Topic 3: Center caBIG™ Team Roles and Responsibilities

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caBIG™ Scope of Impact

  • caBIG™ is an Enterprise project – not just an IT or research initiative.

  • Connecting involves:Complex decisions impacting groups and users across the organization.Integration of new workflows, data requirements, and perhaps new systems.New data sharing complexities and opportunities.

The project team will involve people from all areas of our organization.

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Senior Leadership


  • Provide vision and direction for the Center caBIG™ deployment.

  • Ensure that the Center caBIG™ goals are aligned with overall Center goals.

  • Approve Center caBIG™ Goals and Implementation Plan.


  • Define mission and key goals, and communicate benefits to key stakeholders.

  • Provide guidance to the Deployment Lead.

  • Approve Center caBIG™ Goals.

  • Approve Implementation Plan and identify high priority activities.

  • Support resource allocations needed to implement plans.

  • Ensure that the deployment lead has the contacts and resources needed for success.

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End Users


  • Help evaluate caBIG™ tools and determine points of possible integration with – or in placement of – existing tools in research domains.

  • Provide subject matter expertise, support future workflow changes, and aid in the training of other end users.


  • Work with Deployment Lead and technologists to identify options for adopting or adapting tools.

  • Establish evaluation and success criteria for specific deployment activities within a domain.

  • Identify data sharing opportunities both in the domain of interest, and with respect to specific tools.

  • Support implementation by leading workflow adjustments, training users, andacting as a subject matter expert.

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Policy and Regulatory


  • Support the establishment of data sharing and security policies that support caBIG™ goals.

  • Inform caBIG™ Program Management about new regulatory, legal, and ethicalrequirements that may impact others connecting with caBIG™.


  • Identify key individuals involved in regulatory, privacy and proprietary issues to serve on the deployment team.

  • Outline plans and success factors for participating in the caBIG™ Data Sharing and Security Framework.

  • Prepare local policies and processes that implement the caBIG™ Data Sharing and Security Framework.

  • Facilitate data sharing agreements, and ensure adherence to related rules and guidelines.

  • Share local practices with the broader caBIG™ community (e.g., template documents that have worked for the organization and may work for others).

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  • Deploy caBIG™ infrastructure and tools.

  • Harmonize local vocabularies, standards, and data models with the caBIG™ program.

  • Connect caBIG™ support resources with local support needs.


  • Evaluate caBIG™ infrastructure and tool options against end-user and policy needs.

  • Develop evaluation criteria for tool selection process with end users.

  • Implement caBIG™ plans to meet evaluation criteria set by the team.

  • Help identify resource requirements for connecting with caBIG™, including staffing, contract support, software, and infrastructure needs.

  • Determine when a caGrid node is expected to be functional at the Center and identify required success factors.

  • Support implementation and use of caBIG™ compatible tools.

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caBIG™ Deployment Expectations

  • Deploy a functional caGrid node that will connect to the national infrastructure to enable data sharing

  • Meaningfully deploy caBIG™ tools and infrastructure through adopting and/or adapting applications

  • Participate in developing caBIG™ Data Sharing and Security Framework

  • Final Goal: Use caBIG™ infrastructure and tools to promote collaborative research within and between Centers.

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Next Steps

  • Learn about caBIG™

  • Create timetable for Center caBIG™ Goals and Implementation planning activities

  • Review Center caBIG™ Capability Reports

  • Identify subject matter experts to serve on the deployment team

  • Identify adopt/adapt strategies

  • Develop Center caBIG™ Goals and Implementation Plans

The project team will break into task or workspace groups to work on next steps.

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Determining the Forward Path

Lesson 1: Introduction to caBIG™

  • Next Steps:

    • Determine target research domains across the institutions for connecting with caBIG™ – driven in part by the kinds of data we are willing to and want to share with others who are connecting

    • Identify the team that can drive the decisions required in those domains

    • Establish our goals and a path to implementation

Determining our specific path to connect with caBIG™ will require collaboration and involvement by domain decision-makers, end users, technical experts, and policy team members.

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Next Steps – Resources

  • To send in a specific question about caBIG™, write to: [email protected]

  • caBIG™ Essentials Training provides more information for all audience groups:

  • Tools pages on caBIG™ website provide a full listing of caBIG™ tools – with information to support their use:

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caBIG™ Links Newsletter

To stay updated on caBIG™ in Action, subscribe to the LINKS newsletter at: