Clinical Research Reading List – Summer 2017

What are you reading this summer clinical researchers?

Top 10 Recommendations for Summer Reading and Surfing

How will you pass the time between the Clinops Café series of online meetups?

Here are recommended books, videos, podcasts, and articles to spark your clinical research creativity all summer long!

Summer is calling me louder than anyone this year. It’s been a particularly wet year in the PNW and I’m looking forward to finally seeing consistent sunshine. I am also excited for the slower pace that a summer vacation brings to read and reflect on all that has happened and all that I hope to see happen in the remainder of 2017. Here is a list of inspiration I’ve had in the past as well as some I’m looking forward to starting this summer. What about you? I’d love to hear what content left an impression on you and inspired you to change the way you look at life. Comment below and join us in the clinical researcher cafe so we can chat more!!


1. Playing Big by Tara Mohr empowering and truly eye opening- especially with regards to the differences between a coach and a mentor.


2. Essentialism by Greg McKeown Less is more, when less is better. A great read if you are struggling with prioritization and feeling pulled in way too many directions. “When there is a lack of clarity, people waste time and energy on the trivial many. When they have sufficient levels of clarity, they are capable of greater breakthroughs and innovations—greater than people even realize they ought to have—in those areas that are truly vital” Check out this book on the iBooks Store: https://itun.es/us/knCHR.l


3. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig
A bit philosophical so might take a few reads in certain sections but totally
worth it. “My personal feeling is that this is how any further improvement of the world will be done: by individuals making Quality decisions and that’s all.”
Check out this book also on the iBooks Store: https://itun.es/us/gyRFv.l


4. A little poetry because as they say in Spanish- De poeta y de loco, todos tenemos un poco. We all have a little bit of a poet and a crazy person within us 🙂 The Edge of wonder by Victoria Erickson offers powerful reminders to step back and look at what is around us with the awe it all deserves. Don’t allow yourself to lose your sense of wonder while on the job- I believe it’s the single most powerful way to influence change and make you happier. Be curious and you will make the mundane less boring.

5. Brené Brown. This TEDx on vulnerability is great. I love that she’s a researcher+ storyteller. Aren’t clinical research professionals born to do that too? Think of all the stories we have from our sites/ patients, travels and colleagues. This does not include the stories we must try to piece together to solve our CAPA mysteries.
Brené Brown. This TEDx on vulnerability is great.

6. Work life balance by Carson Tate- great tips that tie in perfectly to our current book- Growing Gills by Jessica Abel. Carson Tate discusses time management and a very important 5 why analysis.

7. Marie Forleo. Great tips dealing with challenges due to working from home and communicating your needs. Example- bosses don’t read minds so we have to tell them what we need. Seems obvious but somehow I manage to forget that a lot 🙂

8. And another great one for planning out your time.
4-minute trick to massive productivity

9. Girl Boss Radio By Sophia Amoruso- very entertaining interviews with women across several industries. As a crafter and follower of the blog Brit+Co, I really enjoyed listening to the interview with the founder and CEO, Brit Morin. It also ties in to the books Growing Gills and Playing Big in many ways.

“Sophia Amoruso interviews world-class girlbosses who have made their mark in creative, cultural, and business ventures to extract solid advice from the lessons they’ve learned along the way…. On this podcast Sophia hopes to humanize the known, champion the unknown, and, well, laugh a little about the absurdity that is life.”

10. Heritage Radio, After the Jump, with Grace Bonney. Check out episode 70- Productivity Tips. Great tie-in to Growing Gills and Playing Big as well.

Books I’d like to read this summer

The Immortal life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

The Happiness of Pursuit by Chris Guillebeau

Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People by Vanessa Van Edwards

Odd Girl Out, an autistic woman in a neurotypical world by Laura James

Meet the ClinOps Toolkit Collective Volunteers

Melina is a ClinOps Toolkit Volunteer in Tacoma, WAMelina C. Ortigas
Hello, I’m Melina and I love asking questions. Naturally, my curiosity led me to the field of research. Officially, I have over 10 years of professional experience in clinical research but I’ve been asking why since I was 2. As an undergrad, I worked on a public health project at migrant camps in California’s Central Valley which led me to find my passion for healthcare. I became a bilingual psychometrist and recruiter for an Alzheimer’s clinic and then a study coordinator working with Fragile X-syndrome and related disorders. My experience there, working alongside brilliant and compassionate researchers on a wide variety of studies and projects (which involved patients who covered the entire life-span), helped me grow in many ways both personally and professionally. As an SC, I saw first-hand how a collaborative environment where everyone’s opinion is valued regardless of title allows teams to exceed their potential and deliver the best care to patients. As a monitor and now Quality Specialist, I often think back to those days with the most vulnerable of patients to ground me and remind me of my why. I’m here to help and I love to collaborate with others on this same mission.

About The Author

Melina Ortigas

I was lucky to find the Lead CRA blog when I started as a monitor. I have been hooked ever since on the content and community Nadia has built over the years. Now, I'm excited to see Clinops Toolkit grow and continue to help make this industry better.