Who would your KOLs identify as Rising stars?

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KOLs Rising stars

To truly discover Rising Stars in a rapidly changing landscape that may no longer recognise traditional metrics – publication numbers, qualifications, involvement in trials, etc – with the same weight as in the past, you need to define the experts of tomorrow by speaking to those leading the field today.

The crucial questions you need answering are: do current KOLs see the value in a Rising Star and expect them to become a KOL? Do other early-to-mid stage academic clinicians also expect them to be the next big thing? And what, in the opinion of current KOLs, is necessary for a researcher, clinician, or academic to make it to the top?

An analysis of publication history and other typical Rising Star metrics such as awards will give you some information about the landscape, but they won’t fully answer the questions above. Insight-focused Rising Star research methods are geared specifically towards providing these answers and giving you an accurate view on the Rising Star landscape in your therapy area.

Take for example, an early-career oncologist who tops your Rising Star list based on traditional quantitative metrics. What happens if the current leaders of the field are all completely unaware of that oncologist? Or perhaps the KOLs who have observed that person action do not hold great regard about that individual’s performance at meetings and other events. Instead, the leading KOLs in your therapy area, those who understand its nuances best, may highly recommend a completely different Rising Star for your needs, one who appears far lower down a list generated purely via traditional quant metrics. 

Rising Stars also vary depending on the medical field. Therefore research methodologies – as well as the definition of a Rising Star – need to vary with them. Rare disease fields, for example, offer fewer opportunities for demonstrations of traditional ‘KOL potential’ such as academic awards. A handful of awards in a field such as oncology may not catch the eye, whereas in a rare disease field, the same number of awards can be a significant indicator of future potential.

Only by incorporating multiple research methodologies, including insight-driven research directly from KOLs, academic clinicians, and front-line HCPs can you ensure that all of the above nuances are taken into account, and you have a Rising Star list that’s truly fit for purpose. 

Dr Adam Haswell BSc MBBS
Medical Director
KOL Insights at VMLY&R HEALTH (formerly System Analytic Limited)

Email: a.haswell@vmlyr.com
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KOL Insights VMLY&RHealth
9 May, 2023