Clinical Research Innovation

About CRI

A 45-percent increase in cancer diagnoses in the U.S. is expected by 2030. Cancer clinical trials play a crucial role in prevention, early detection, treatment, and, ultimately, cancer cures.

Recognizing that clinical trials in the U.S. face administrative and staffing barriers, regulatory constraints, increasing costs, and lagging patient accrual, AACI established the Clinical Research Initiative (CRI) in 2009 as a presidential initiative. 

The first AACI CRI Annual Meeting took place that year with fewer than 200 attendees. By 2018, attendance exceeded 400 with 11 exhibitors and more than 60 posters on display. 

In late 2018, to mark its popularity and success, the program was renamed Clinical Research Innovation.  

View Our Progress Report

Strategic Plan & Goals

  1. Increase AACI cancer center participation in CRI
  2. Share cancer center clinical trial best practices through the collection and dissemination of benchmarking data
  3. Integrate CRI into AACI programs/initiatives
  4. Assist the centers in increasing patient engagement and enrollment into clinical trials
  5. Develop outcomes to drive change and advance cancer center clinical research programs
  6. Develop a training curriculum for new principal investigators (PI) and new clinical trials office (CTO) administrative directors
  7. Provide financial support for CRI

The CRI Steering Committee helps guide and implement activities to disseminate best practices across AACI cancer center clinical trials offices.

Carrie Lee, MD, MPH 
UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center

View All Steering Committee Members

A Sharing Platform

The CRI Listserv engages 645 subscribers from 82 of AACI's member centers. The listserv is an efficient platform for AACI members to ask questions, receive immediate feedback, and share best practices.

Recent Listserv Topics
  • Cancer center staff access to standard operating procedures (SOPs) 

  • Dedicated resources for facilitating clinical trial referrals

  • Patient representatives on feasibility committees

  • Using eVisits for clinical trials

Working Groups & Surveys

eRegulatory Working Group

To examine the benefits of establishing a common nomenclature to use for regulatory filing systems, AACI established the eRegulatory Working Group in October 2018. The working group is comprised of AACI leadership, members from AACI cancer centers, and other relevant stakeholders who are working together to create a common cancer clinical trial regulatory file nomenclature.


  • Identify the challenges associated with non-standardized nomenclature

  • Develop standard nomenclature for trial regulatory use

  • Develop a site map for storing common documents

  • Share best practices for site monitoring

Benchmarking Survey

The CRI Steering Committee invited cancer centers to participate in a benchmarking survey to learn more about cancer center clinical trials office (CTO) workload, structure and staffing, trial activation timelines, and sources of CTO funding support. The purpose of collecting this information is to allow cancer center members to compare their center with other AACI members.

CRI received 78 responses from AACI member centers. Data analysis is underway. The next steps will be to send back summary data reports to participating centers and prepare data for publication. 

Save the Date!

11th Annual AACI CRI Meeting
July 10-11, 2019
Chicago, IL

Registration opens March 1, 2019!

Learn More

To view the CRI document library, access archived Listserv discussions, and register for meetings, you will need to create a Portal account. Administrative approval of new accounts may take up to 24 hours.