Our Strategic Directions

CREST.BD: Changing the landscape of bipolar disorder research & care
OUR STRATEGIC DIRECTIONS 2014-2019 

The Collaborative RESearch Team to study psychosocial issues in bipolar disorder (CREST.BD) is a leader in research and Knowledge Exchange (KE) regarding psychosocial factors in people with BD, recognising their interplay with biological and genetic factors. Over the next five years, we will focus our effort on 5 strategic priorities:

  1. Advancing BD psychosocial research and application of research in Canada and internationally to contribute to optimal health and quality of life (QoL) and diminished stigma for people with BD across the lifespan.
  2. Meaningfully engaging individuals with lived experience of BD and their supports in authentic collaboration among researchers and healthcare providers to enhance the relevance and usefulness of BD psychosocial research and KE.
  3. Strengthening the capacity for psychosocial BD research and KE within the network, partners, and affiliates to advance BD psychosocial research and application of research in Canada and internationally.
  4. Engaging with global partners and affiliates to enhance the reach and impact of BD psychosocial research and KE.
  5. Being sustainable and accountable to stakeholders.

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Read the full Strategic Plan in PDF here.
For a summary, read on below.

Network Leader’s Message
CREST.BD Network’s Strategic Plan lays out our vision for the next five years. The Strategic Plans of the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry and the Mental Health Commission of Canada have been referred to in the development of our plan. Our plan is specific to our mission as an evolving pan-Canadian Research and KE Network with global linkages.

Our strategic plan was developed through an iterative process involving the following steps:

  • Establishment of a Strategic Planning Working Group, Research Working Group, and KE Working Group, National Advisory Group and identification of an external network consultant;
  • Creation (in July 2012) of a one-page document capturing the network’s vision, mission, values and goals;
  • A focused environmental scan;
  • Iterative consultation with stakeholders and review and discussion of emergent themes from these consultations;
  • Distillation of feedback from the consultation into a Strategic Vision for Research and KE, and consultation on this vision;
  • Development of the strategic plan presented here.

The plan represents the collaborative efforts of all working group, National Advisory Group and full network members. It shares our Mission, Vision, Values, Strategic Priorities and Goals for the next five years as well as specific actions for 2014-2015. We will report on our progress in achieving the goals in this Strategic Plan by publishing annual reports on our website. We will also review the Strategic Plan annually to ensure it remains relevant to our members and the broader community of stakeholders and identify new actions for the coming year. I look forward to working together with stakeholders towards the achievement of the Strategic Goals articulated in this plan.

Dr. Erin E. Michalak, PhD
Associate Professor, CREST.BD Network Leader
Mood Disorders Centre, Department of Psychiatry
University of British Columbia

Our Vision
We will contribute to a world where people living with BD will experience optimized health and QoL and minimized stigma across the lifespan as a result of tailored psychosocial and/or self-management interventions informed by effective psychosocial research and KE in BD.

Our Mission
We are a collaborative network of researchers, healthcare providers and community members whose mission is the optimization of health and QoL and minimization of stigma for people with BD across the lifespan. To realize our mission, we advance BD psychosocial research and its application in Canada and internationally.

Our Values
Our values serve as guidelines for our conduct and behaviour as we work towards our vision. We value impact, integration, innovation, diversity, equity, integrity and an orientation towards wellness and resiliency.

Impact
We strive to undertake action-orientated research with a high potential for impact on the health, quality of life and care of people with BD

Integration
We prioritize integration, for example, we work within an integrated KT model and specialise in integrated research methods (e.g., mixed methods research)

Innovation
We emphasise innovation and creativity in our research and KE

Diversity
We respect diversity: in opinions, in types of expertise, in definitions of evidence and in disciplinary approaches

Equity
We value equity, recognising that social injustices are experienced by certain groups of people (e.g., ethnic minorities, people who are facing health challenges or are entrenched in poverty). We strive to empower people with BD and their supports to participate in research and KE to the fullest of their abilities

Integrity
We value integrity that is based on accountability and transparency (e.g., in decision-making, organisational structure, financial conduct and research and KE processes). We also foster non-hierarchical collaborations, participatory decision making and leadership and shared power

Wellness and Resilience
We prioritise a strengths-based approach with a focus on wellness and resiliency

Our Strategic Priorities
To have the most impact over the next five years we will focus on:

  1. Research and KE Excellence
    Create and advance knowledge and understanding of the psychosocial factors associated with BD to contribute to optimal health and QoL for people with BD through the discovery, dissemination and application of research within and across disciplines and sectors.
  1. Community Involvement
    Engage individuals with lived experience of BD and their supports in authentic collaboration among researchers, healthcare providers and other stakeholders to increase the relevance and usefulness of BD psychosocial research and KE. Expand science on community involvement in BD research with a focus on engagement within web-based communities.
  1. Capacity Building
    Strengthen the capacity for psychosocial BD research and KE in BD research within our network membership, partners and affiliates in Canada and globally.
  1. International Engagement and Recognition
    Participate with global partners and affiliates to enhance the reach and impact of BD psychosocial research and KE. Establish network as an international leader in psychosocial BD research and KE.
  1. Sustainability
    Ensure that the Network is sustainable and accountable to its stakeholders.