Removing barriers to research: responding to the Tickell review

Last updated on 12 Feb 2024

The government has published its response to Professor Adam Tickell’s Independent Review of Research Bureaucracy.

As part of the response, the government has announced an action plan to reduce bureaucracy, encouraging an agile, streamlined, and fast-moving research system.

The Tickell review was published in 2022 and found that unnecessary bureaucracy in the UK research system - particularly within research institutions and funders - was impeding efficiency and productivity.

Matt Westmore, Chief Executive at the HRA, said:

A headshot of Dr Matt Westmore

'The government’s response to the Tickell Review sets out plans, which will help foster and encourage a research system that is more innovative and efficient. This will help to make it easier for NHS patients to take part in research and benefit from new treatments and better care faster .

'We have already carried out a lot of work to reduce bureaucracy and streamline the UK approval system and we are very pleased this has been recognised by the government in its response.

'In particular, the government has praised improvements we’ve already made to our approvals through our collaborative work with the devolved nations and our combined review service with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. There was also praise for work we’re involved in to explore the benefits of standard templates for contracts and collaboration agreements.

'We’re especially pleased the government has recognised our work to include people with lived experience in our decision making and to increase the diversity of people in our Research Ethics Committees.

'We’re committed to making it easy to do research that people can trust, and we look forward to working with the government and our partners to help deliver the government’s plans.'

The government has set up a steering group, with funders and research sector representatives, to support the delivery of the commitments in its action plan.

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