Since 2017, the TSU Faculty of Medicine has been involved in an international research project, iCREATE: Increasing Capacity for Injury Research in Eastern Europe, financed by Fogarty International Center at the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). The aim of the project is increasing capacity to conduct research on the topic of injury and violence prevention in partner countries (Georgia, Armenia, and Moldova), as well as to foster the development of research skills of young specialists investigating injury and violence prevention issues, in the same countries. The University of Iowa (USA) in collaboration with partner universities, the University of California, San-Diego (USA) and the Babeș-Bolyai University (Romania), are coordinating the project. Professor Nino Chikhladze, is the project's coordinator in Georgia. The initiative is being implemented by academic and teaching staff from the Faculty of Medicine, as well as its doctorate (PhD) and master's students from the Public Health Programs.
As part of this project, a partners' meeting was held on September 4-5, 2023, followed by the symposium "Injury and Violence Prevention - Public Health Perspectives'' on September 6-7 and a summer school "Global Injury and Violence Prevention" on September 7-10. Summer school was attended by 12 students from three countries. Together with TSU representatives, professors and students from the United States (University of Iowa, University of California), Romania (Babeș-Bolyai University), Armenia (Yerevan State Medical University), and the Republic of Moldova (State University of Pharmacy and Medicine) participated in the symposium, and summer school. The results of research carried out within the project were presented at the symposium and an interesting discussion followed. Speakers, including Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of California, Professor Corinne Peec-Asa, Director of Training and Education at the Injury Prevention Research Centre, Assoc. Prof. Cara Hamann, and Co-PI Ass. Prof. Diana Dulf, gave positive feedback on the work performed and outlined ways for future collaborative research. The summer school program included lectures and practical classes on the topic of preventing injuries and violence (epidemiology, research methodologies, ethical issues, and so on).
The project will run until 2027, providing an excellent opportunity for TSU academic staff and students to be engaged in international research, joint publications, and professional development.