Typically research consortia are regional or national groupings of physicians working collectively to advance research within specific disease entities ó they become players in very specialized therapeutic markets providing leadership and expertise, both academically and commercially. These united fronts of physicians work in tandem with pharmaceutical companies to devise and execute promising clinical trials leading to worldwide answers. Consortia execute mutually beneficial financial sponsorship agreements with their pharmaceutical clients. These financial agreements are performance based so that payments from Industry sponsors are measurable and justified.
Solidarity of members coupled with ongoing communications is at the centre of every successful Consortium. Among their strengths, Consortia become real-time forums empowering, informing and educating members on clinical trial projects. Consortia also become vehicles for collaborative academic research projects, often independent of industry, aimed at answering research questions.
Successful consortia employ a business approach that is structured and ethical, yet develop their own unique identity. Consortia earn reputation through professionalism and establish credibility through project performance. The giving back of information through publishing, teaching, original ideas, advice, inventions and guidelines is incumbent upon each group for the benefit of medical science communities and the general population. In short, a consortiumís research accomplishments reinforce credibility and provide a tangible means of contributing knowledge to the scientific community locally and abroad.
Clinical Trials undoubtedly will generate much of the revenue especially at the outset, and long-term objectives should be to foster high quality independent research within each Consortium. Surplus revenue from clinical trials can be re-invested to fund R&D initiatives. Finally, "Inter-Consortia Relations" have become very important to validate and reinforce the goals and objectives of individual Consortia.