The way we operate

When to involve us

We prefer to be involved in projects as early as possible, so that we participate in as many aspects of the research design and conduct as possible. We both preach and practice the idea that the experts in design and analysis should serve as research project’s midwives, not post-mortem analysts. Most importantly, we would like to believe that there is a big difference between the Statistics and Decision Analysis Platform and a Rapid Response Unit or a Fire Brigade. If you have a deadline please discuss this with us well in advance.

Financial considerations

Our activities can take various forms ranging from one-off consultations to on-going support and collaboration for the lifetime of a project.

We operate on a cost-recovery basis, thus:

  • An initial 1 hour consultation is free;
  • Further consultations are charged (a variety of options depending on the nature of our involvement) – for more information please contact stats at florey;
  • If our involvement is envisaged, please remember to allocate some funding for statistical and data management support when preparing a funding application for your study

Initial consultation

In order to organise an initial consultation, please send an e-mail to stats at florey with the subject line “Initial statistical consultation request”. We will get back to you usually within 48-72 hours to organize the consultation.

Please note:

  • Florey Post-doctoral/clinical fellows and PhD students are recommended to ensure the support of their supervisors and/or lab heads before requesting assistance;
  • Melbourne Brain Centre and Austin post-doctoral/clinical fellows and PhD students are requested to obtain the support of their Department Heads/Deputy Heads (Research) before requesting assistance;
  • Austin “Scholarly Selective” junior researchers are required to obtain the support of their supervisors;

All potential clients and collaborators from outside Melbourne Brain Centre and Austin Health are welcome to contact stats at florey directly.

Intellectual contribution and co-authorship

If we make an intellectual and scientific contribution to the project, then co-authorship of resulting papers is appropriate. The co-authorship is about intellectual contribution and therefore is an issue independent from financial considerations. Co-authorship cannot be used as a payment in kind and neither is payment a substitute for co-authorship. The way we operate on this issue is based on two major guidelines:

  • The Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (NHMRC, 2007). To warrant a co-authorship, it requires a substantial contribution to the work in a combination of conception and design of the project, analysis and interpretation of research data, and drafting significant parts of the work or critically revising it so as to contribute to the interpretation;
  • World Association of Medical editors (WAME) guidelines on plagiarism (defined as “Failure to recognise intellectual contributions of others”) as scientific misconduct.