What Is the Value and Role of Academic Medicine in the Life of Its University?

Ricardo Azziz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


National and global events are rapidly and irrevocably driving transformation in both academia and health care. One result is an increase in the pace of institutional restructuring, consolidations, and mergers, including the melding of academic medical centers (AMCs; i.e., medical schools and their clinical enterprises) with nonmedical universities. Georgia Regents University (GRU) resulted from one such recent consolidation, and the experience at the institution has highlighted the need to answer the question "What is the value and role of academic medicine and an AMC in the life and transformation of its university?"In attempting to answer this question, the author first contrasts the cultural features of academic medicine and nonmedical faculty and leaders, as observed from the GRU experience, which might be useful for leaders of other institutions of higher education. His analysis suggests that academic medicine is currently significantly insulated from the larger university, and that this segregation or siloing represents a lost opportunity for both the AMC and the university at large. The author's experience suggests that fostering greater synergy between the university and its AMC adds significant value, and that such synergy better ensures the ability of those universities with an AMC to undertake and meet future transformative challenges. Strategies should be proactively developed both to enhance academic medicine leaders' engagement with, exposure to, and education regarding the operations and challenges of higher education and the broader university, and, likewise, to increase nonmedical faculty's understanding of and experience with the value and unique challenges of academic medicine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)208-211
Number of pages4
JournalAcademic Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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