The Brisbane Colorectal Surgery Group is a closely aligned association of 7 Clinical Colorectal Specialists. All members have very busy practices and thus produce an enormous caseload available for clinical based research. All aspects of the speciality are well covered by sub-speciality interests of the individuals.

To improve research output and quality, we have appointed research co-ordinator, Dr Aleksandra Edmundson.

The co-ordinator will facilitate the following aspects:

  • Retrieving the papers (access through the University of QLD online portal)
  • Ethics application
  • Data collection
  • Data analysis and statistician consultation
  • Providing realistic deadlines
  • Transitioning a project through serial investigators where the timeline is beyond the scope of a single registrar/fellow/student

Registrars work in the unit for 6 months and fellows for 12 months. RMOs and medical students are only briefly assigned to the unit but represent a small number of very keen individuals. It takes some time to get a project formulated and then commenced. The data collection is often the stumbling block that leaves projects unfinished. Unfinished projects are a waste of a considerable amount of the individual’s time and a wasted opportunity for the unit. Our desire is to streamline this process.

Consultant input we feel is most crucial at several stages:

  • Initial concept & collaboration
  • Data fields to be collected
  • Discussion of results
  • Critique of the draft paper
  • Submission target ie. journal

The role of the investigator would include:

  • Initial literature review
  • Ethics application in conjunction with the research co-ordinator
  • Help in data collection and attainment of charts/patient interviews/questionnaires etc.
  • Analysis of the results and liaison with statistician
  • Draft paper
  • Submission to journal
  • Presentation (Grand rounds, ASC, GSA AGM)

Research Assistant:

Dr Aleks Edmundson also works part time for the Inflammatory Bowel Disease unit and there are synergies in both research interests.


The provision of this infrastructure has a financial and opportunity cost to the unit. Potential investigators will sign a “memorandum” outlining their responsibilities. This will include achievable deadlines and a schedule of meetings to ensure completion. If they fail to meet these commitments then they would not achieve authorship and the project will be passed on to another candidate.

Regular meetings will be held with the consultant team or principal author and allow presentation to the research interest group.

A project will begin with the initial literature review.  This would ultimately be included in the final publication.

A/Prof David A Clark
Program Director ANZTBCRS
Senior Lecturer University of Qld
Research Director Brisbane CRU