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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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1. What do you mean by commissioned workstreams?
2. What do you mean by researcher led workstreams?
3. What is meant by needs-led?
4. What is meant by science-added?
5. What calls for proposals are currently open?
6. Where should proposals for feasibility and pilot studies be submitted?
7. Do NIHR programmes fund diagnostic tests?
8. How does the NIHR support researchers in developing their proposals?
9. What issues should I consider to ensure that my application is deemed 'deliverable'?
10. Which programme should I apply to?
11. Do NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC fund international studies?
12. Do NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC co-fund studies with other international agencies?
13. Are there any specific requirements for international studies?
14. What other international work does NETSCC participate in?
15. I have some questions not answered here - what should I do now?
16. What is the NIHR's approach to intellectual property (IP)?


1. What do you mean by commissioned workstreams?

Commissioned workstreams start with the information needs of decision makers typically, but not exclusively, within the NHS. These are refined and prioritised by people with expertise in the field, and commissioning briefs are advertised. Applications are then assessed for compliance with the commissioning brief, scientific quality, feasibility and value for money and a decision is made whether or not to fund the research.

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2. What do you mean by researcher led workstreams?

Researcher led workstreams are open calls for researchers to apply for funding for their own topics and questions. These applications are prioritised in terms of NHS or other information need in a process similar to that in the commissioned workstreams. Applications are then assessed for scientific quality, feasibility and value for money and a decision is made whether or not to fund the research.

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3. What is meant by needs-led?

We are needs-led because we assess what are the important questions and in what priority they should be answered. We actively ensure that our programmes meet the needs of decision makers. We ensure we are needs-led throughout the funding pipeline by actively assessing need and priority for all funding streams.

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4. What is meant by science-added?

We are science-added because we ask does the proposal meet the scientific quality we insist on, and how can we support the delivery and improvement of quality? We actively apply scientific knowledge, expertise and methods to support the scientific quality of proposals and funded research. We communicate closely with the research community, and provide significant post award support and monitoring.

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5. What calls for proposals are currently open?
We commission research for a number of NIHR research programmes. Please visit the Funding Opportunities section to see the list of calls for proposals that are currently open.

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6. Where should proposals for feasibility and pilot studies be submitted?

The EME, PHR, HTA and RfPB Programmes all fund feasibility and pilot studies. To view the agreed definition for feasibility and pilot studies, please visit the NETSCC glossary page.

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7. Do NIHR programmes fund diagnostic tests?

The EME, PHR, HTA, RfPB and i4i Programmes all fund diagnostic tests. To view the agreed definition of diagnostic tests, please visit the NETSCC glossary page.

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 8. How does the NIHR support researchers in developing their proposals?

The NIHR provides specific support to help researchers develop and design high quality research proposals through the NIHR Research Design Service and through the involvement of Clinical Trials Units in your research. For further information, please visit the Developing your Proposal section.

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9. What issues should I consider to ensure that my application is deemed 'deliverable'?

NETSCC is working closely with the NIHR Clinical Research Networks to ensure that the studies which it funds can be successfully delivered in the NHS, securing maximum benefits to patients and value-for-money of the NETS programmes. The Medicines for Children Research Network and the Association of Medical Research Charities have produced a guide on ‘Points to consider when assessing the feasibility of research’. Many of the points discussed in the document apply to all types of clinical research, not just paediatrics. The document can be accessed here.

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10. Which NIHR programme should I apply to?

Our ‘Which Programme’ guide provides information about NETS programmes to help you determine the most suitable programme for your application.

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11. Do NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC fund international studies?

Studies funded by the NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC are generally UK based. The programmes will consider funding an international study where the chief investigator and lead institution are based in the UK and the study is relevant to and a priority for the UK population, and where overseas recruitment is funded from other sources. It will be exceptional for NIHR programmes to fund recruitment overseas. Similarly, these programmes are open to bids to support a UK recruitment arm of an international study where the study is relevant to and a priority for the UK population; a UK based principal investigator should be the lead applicant. Each project will be considered on a case by case basis and applicants interested in submitting a proposal for an international study should contact the relevant funding programme for advice.

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 12. Do NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC co-fund studies with other international agencies?

The NIHR programmes managed by NETSCC have joint-funded international studies and are willing to consider co-funding studies with other international agencies in the future. In addition, the programmes will consider collaborating with organisations to ensure that parallel international trials are set up to enable analysis of similar endpoints. Each project is considered on a case by case basis. Agencies interested in collaborating in joint studies should contact netscc.international@soton.ac.uk in the first instance.

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13. Are there any specific requirements for international studies?

Each study will be treated on a case by case basis. Applicants interested in submitting a proposal for an international study should contact the relevant funding programme for advice. All research studies funded need to demonstrate benefit to the UK population.

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14. What other international work does NETSCC participate in?

NETSCC is a member of The European Network for Health Technology Assessment (EUnetHTA), Health Technology Assessment International (HTAi) and the International Network of Agencies for Health technology Assessment (INAHTA). In addition, NETSCC participates at the international level in a number of initiatives relevant to our funding streams. NETSCC is willing to consider collaboration on joint initiatives with other foreign and international agencies.

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15. I have some questions not answered here - what should I do now?

Please refer to the individual programme websites as further information is available. 

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Efficacy and
Mechanism Evaluation Programme
www.eme.ac.uk
Health Technology Assessment Programme www.hta.ac.uk
Health Services and Delivery Research Programme

www.netscc.ac.uk/hsdr

Public Health Research Programme www.phr.ac.uk
Systematic Reviews Programme www.netscc.ac.uk/systematic_reviews

NIHR CCF:

Policy Research Programme www.nihr-ccf.org.uk
Programme Grants for Applied Research www.nihr-ccf.org.uk/site/programmes/programmegrants/default.cfm
Research for Patient Benefit (RfPB) www.nihr-ccf.org.uk/site/programmes/rfpb/default.cfm
Invention for Innovation (i4i) www.nihr-ccf.org.uk/site/programmes/i4i/default.cfm
Research for Innovation, Speculation and Creativity (RISC) www.nihr-ccf.org.uk/site/programmes/risc/default.cfm

If you are still unable to find the answer to your question then please contact us using the following details:

NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC)
Alpha House, Enterprise Road,
University of Southampton Science Park
Chilworth, Southampton
SO16 7NS

Tel +44 (0)23 8059 5586
Fax +44 (0)23 8059 5639
Email: info@netscc.ac.uk

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The NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC), based at the University of Southampton, manages evaluation research programmes and activities for the NIHR.

 

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