Reflections Concerning the Research Division of the Cleveland Clinic

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THE opening of the new chemical laboratories of the Research Division is, wisely, I think, being used as an occasion for reviewing where we have been going on, so we need an occasion such as this to think in perspective.

The Research Division as we now know it was started in 1945 under very difficult economic conditions. The war was not won and the building had stood in disrepair for some time. I must confess that when Dr. A. C. Corcoran and I first saw it, we nearly took the first train home to Indianapolis. I am glad we didn’t.

The Division was set up with a singular plan. The patients were to be the focal point from which problems were to be drawn, and all we could muster of the varied disciplines of science were to be put in concert to solve these problems. Separate departments were deliberately not created in the hope that the investigators would center their attention on the solution of the problem at hand, rather than the more restricted concern for furtherance of departmental status. Cooperation was thus insured in a unique way up to, and sometimes including, personality clashes.

A research unit of this sort should, in our view, remain small. This permits a minimum of rules and regulations and committees. Thus, fully 90 per cent of the investigator’s time was made available for investigation. Some think this is too much!

A major point of policy is that the program of research in the . . .