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Research funding

Resource page

Funding for research can come a variety of sources, including:

  • commercial funders, including industry and private companies
  • non-commercial funders such as government departments, research councils, charities, National Institute of Health in USA (NIH) and the European Commission.

It is important that the various types of costs of research are appropriately attributed in order to ensure that the appropriate funding arrangements are put in place. Guidance for non-commercial research is set out in the guidance ‘Attributing the costs of health and social care Research and Development’. Details for each country are available:

England [https://www.crn.nihr.ac.uk/acord/]

Scotland [http://www.nhsresearchscotland.org.uk/working-with-us/researchers/acord]

Wales [http://www.healthandcareresearch.gov.wales/costing/]

Northern Ireland [http://www.nicrn.hscni.net/2012/09/attributing-the-costs-of-health-and-social-care-research-development-acord-for-northern-ireland/]


Below are links to some possible sources of further information (note this is not an exhaustive list):

Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC)
http://www.amrc.org.uk/ [external link]
The AMRC is the national membership organisation for medical and health research charities.

AMRC members support over one-third of all UK publicly-funded medical research in the UK, with members investing over £1.2 billion in health research in the UK in 2012.

Chief Scientist Office (CSO)
http://www.cso.scot.nhs.uk/about/funding-2/ [external link]
CSO offers a number of different funding streams to directly support health research in Scotland.

Medical Research Council (MRC)
www.mrc.ac.uk/Fundingopportunities/index.htm [external link]
The MRC funds research through a range of grants, calls, highlight notices, studentships and fellowships.

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)
www.nihr.ac.uk/research/Pages/default.aspx  [external link]
The NIHR funds a range of programmes addressing a broad range of health priorities. Funding is based on the quality and relevance of the research to personal social services, public health and the NHS.

NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC)
www.netscc.ac.uk/ [external link]
NETSCC, which is part of the NIHR, manages a number of research programmes, including: Efficacy and Mechanism Evaluation; Health Services and Delivery Research; Health Technology Assessment; Public Health Research; and Systematic Reviews.

Health and Care Research Wales
http://www.healthandcareresearch.gov.wales/ [external link]

NISCHR is the Welsh Government body whose goal is to fund research that will inform care and improve the health and wealth of the people of Wales.

Public Health Agency – Health & Social Care Research and Development Directorate [HSC R&D]
http://www.publichealth.hscni.net/directorate-public-health/hsc-research-and-development [external link]
The HSC R&D Directorate provides information about funding opportunities that are available to researchers working in Health & Social Care (HSC) Northern Ireland.

UK Clinical Research Collaboration (UKCRC)
http://www.ukcrc.org/research-coordination/ [external link]
Many different organisations fund health research in the UK. The UKCRC has developed a coherent approach to health research funding by providing a forum to coordinate the activities of funding bodies and by developing an evidence base to inform strategic planning.

UK Research Office (UKRO)
https://www.ukro.ac.uk/ [external link]
UKRO is the European office of the UK Research Councils. Activities include providing details on European Commission funding opportunities.

More information about funding may also be obtained through local NHS R&D Offices.