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Research Transparency

Last updated on 1 Oct 2020

Our vision is that trusted information from health and social care research studies is publicly available for the benefit of all.

Research transparency is central to ethical research practice. Research studies should be registered and the results made public, so that participants are protected from unnecessary studies and research funding maximised. When research is carried out openly and transparently, everyone will be able to see what research is happening and the outcomes from finished studies. This means that: 

  • patients, service users and carers can find opportunities to join studies 
  • researchers can build on previous research findings in their efforts to develop new and better treatments, and to identify the best ways for us to stay healthy and well
  • health professionals, commissioners, policy makers, and funders, can use research findings to help make informed decisions.

Promoting transparency across the research landscape is central to the HRA’s role to facilitate safe and ethical research.

Download a PDF version of our Make it Public strategy

We've set out our 'Make it public: transparency and openness in health and social care research' strategy in HTML. 

You can also download an accessible PDF version of this strategy.

Our research transparency strategy

Our strategy, ‘Make it public: transparency and openness in health and social care research’, sets out our vision that trusted information from health and social care research studies is publicly available for the benefit of all. To help achieve this, the HRA is working with key players across the research system, patients and the public to:

  • Make transparency easy 
  • Make transparency the norm 
  • Make information public 

The strategy was developed following a public consultation and is supported by an implementation plan.

Four elements of research transparency

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The UK Policy Framework for Health and Social Care Research sets out the responsibilities for researchers, sponsors and funders for all aspects of research, including responsibilities for the four elements of research transparency. These are: 

  1. registering research studies
  2. reporting results
  3. informing participants
  4. sharing study data and tissue
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