Going for growth : improvement in the infrastructural and management support for clinical academic research

FOWLER DAVIS, Sally (2015). Going for growth : improvement in the infrastructural and management support for clinical academic research. BMJ Quality Improvement Reports, 4 (1), 1-5.

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Link to published version:: 10.1136/bmjquality.u208144.w3845


Our objective was to implement a Directorate Research Strategy to improve and grow clinical academic capacity and capability and ensure that the organisational systems and processes enabled clinical staff and managers to increase grant capture, undertake clinically relevant research including the adoption of NIHR portfolio sites and established a culture in which research was an accepted part of professional practice.

An initial evaluation of senior and middle manager attitudes and understanding of the research infrastructure and benefits of research identified that the Directorate had a deeply segmented view of research and only a partial view of how research could benefit patients and improve their services. A significant number of staff claimed to be research active but this activity was not contributing to the service knowledge or being translated into grant capture, leading to income that could be used to invest in patient -facing research. Few managers had appreciated the challenge of implementing the research strategy or the potential of enabling research active staff to generate clinical academic careers.

An improvement approach was adopted, based on the 'Discipline of Improvement' (Penny 2003) recognising the need to embed research activity as a sustained activity that would involve all staff across the Directorate and deliver to the performance targets agree with the organisation. The interventions were introduced to assist key managers in each professional group to champion research and undertake the organisational change that would be needed. The Discipline of Improvement suggests an equal and proportional range of activity to engage staff, amend and adapt processes and systems, carry out organisational change and 'make it a habit'.

The four cycles of improvement over 14 months were focused on the aim of inclusion of clinical staff in the delivery of the research strategy and this has resulted in 'academic status' being awarded in 2015. A clinical academic infrastructure, Public and Patient involvement and participation of clinical academic staff (10%) in grant capture and income has sustained the investment in research growth.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Centre for Health and Social Care Research
Identification Number: 10.1136/bmjquality.u208144.w3845
Depositing User: Sally Fowler-Davis
Date Deposited: 26 Jun 2015 08:45
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2016 23:00
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/10512

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