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Bournemouth University

Welcome to VOICE at Bournemouth University

Our goal at Bournemouth University is for those who are most affected by health, economic and social inequalities to lead the way in shaping responses and improving outcomes. People with lived experience expertise are integral to BU’s vision to inspire learning, advance knowledge and enrich society through the fusion of education, research and practice.


The BU PIER Partnership

The PIER (Public Involvement in Education and Research) Partnership is an award-winning initiative at Bournemouth University. We facilitate collaborations between people with lived experience, students and academics to enhance the student journey and inform all stages of research.  

Activity is based on meaningful engagement where everyone involved feels valued and respected for their lived experience and expertise.

Through VOICE we hope to capture a wealth of lived experience expertise.


Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit

Bournemouth University Clinical Research Unit (BUCRU) offers a collaborative model for supporting and conducting health-related research in Dorset. BUCRU supports researchers in improving the quality, quantity and efficiency of research across Bournemouth University (BU) and local NHS Trusts, by:

  • Helping researchers to develop high quality applications for external research funding (including small grants)
  • On-going collaborative involvement in funded research projects

BUCRU is partly funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), and incorporates the Dorset and Salisbury office of the NIHR Research Design Service South West (RDS SW).

BUCRU Public Involvement work is conducted in collaboration with BU PIER Partnership and VOICE.

BUCRU Website

Chief Cook & Bottle Washer

A carer-led research study

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer is an example of a research study led and directed by people with lived experience. The PIER Partnership conducted the study in collaboration with older male carers over the age of 85 and CRISP Carers Centre.

Read Case Study

Engaging with older people to share research and generate new ideas

The Ageing and Dementia Research Centre’s (ADRC) monthly virtual coffee mornings is a new activity, designed to engage and inform older members of the public about ongoing research and generate new ideas for future studies.

Read Case Study

Get involved. Make a Difference.

Join our passionate community of members of the public, patients & carers today.  Remember, becoming a member is absolutely FREE of cost & commitment.


Privacy Notice

This Notice is for people who are participating in, or have been invited to participate in, an academic research project being undertaken by BU students and/or staff (“BU researchers”). You should read this Notice alongside the participant information sheet provided to you by BU researchers. 

Click here to read the Research Participant privacy notice.

Click here for all Bournemouth University privacy notices.

BU's core strengths across research, education and professional practice

BU is best known for the following research areas. Although [email protected] focuses on involvement in health and social care research, there may be opportunities to inform all aspects of research at BU. These are:

Bournemouth University is helping people live better, for longer.

From our work with regional healthcare partners to our international research, BU is helping people live better, healthier lives, and age well.

Bournemouth University is conserving waters and coastlines for future generations

BU is helping to save endangered species, protect coastal regions and understand ecosystems. Focusing on coastal and inland freshwater regions, the university uses its location to embed good practice that helps to protect and preserve a sustainable environment for generations to come

Bournemouth University helps to prepare for and recover from crisis

BU is leading governments and organisations across the world in preparedness for, and recovery from, crises – with people at the centre. From the work of our Disaster Management Centre to research focussed on building resilience and cyber security, BU manages situations, makes systems and operations safe and secure, and works for the protection of the world we live in.

Bournemouth University challenges marginalisation, misinformation and under-representation

We engage with seldom heard voices to challenge marginalisation, embody ethical reporting and digital responsibility, protect the vulnerable and empower communities

Bournemouth University is helping creative and cultural industries to grow sustainably and responsibly

BU has expertise to help cultural and creative industries to grow and develop. From our Oscar-winning graduates to our international tourism reputation, we are advancing knowledge that supports jobs and helps industries to thrive. Our work helps to add enjoyment to life, from the holidays we go on, to the movies we watch and museums we visit.

Our research centres

BU’s research centres focus on specific areas of interest. They are multi-disciplinary, spanning departments and faculties. Centres have close links with professional organisations and other research institutions, facilitating collaboration and maximising the output and impact of the research.

Explore our research

Our research shapes and changes the world around us, providing solutions to real-world problems and informing the education we deliver. Our students are a key part of the research we conduct, co-creating knowledge with us and playing a crucial role in everything that we do

Get in touch

If you have lived experience expertise and would like to get involved, please visit the For the Public tab for general information and guidance on how to join. To find out more about the BU PIER Partnership, please visit our webpages at  For any other queries,  please email the team using the contacts below

If you are a staff member or research student at BU and wish to find out more about how the VOICE platform can support your efforts, please visit the For Researchers tab for general information. To find out more about the BU PIER Partnership, please visit our webpages at  and for BUCRU, please visit

For any other queries, please email the team at [email protected]

Within [email protected], the PIER Partnership lead on public involvement activity in relation to: engaging marginalised groups in research, collaborating with community organisations, developing  participatory and user led research, delivering user led public involvement training, and coordinating the involvement of people with lived experience in the design and delivery of teaching and learning in the Faculty of Health and Social Science.

BUCRU lead on PPI support for grant applications for health and social care research, including: help with plain English summaries, advice on recruiting and managing patient advisory/consultation groups, assistance with public involvement funding for national peer reviewed applications and advice with involving the public in all stages of the research cycle.  There is also an opportunity to obtain a critical review of a proposed grant application before it is sent to a funding body at our NIHR RDS SW Project Review Committee.

Meet The Team

Mel Hughes

Academic Lead, PIER Partnership

Peter Atkins

Service User & Carer Coordinator

Helen Allen

Patient & Public Involvement Lead, BUCRU

Louise Ward

Patient & Public Involvement Support, BUCRU

Angela Warren

Service User & Carer Coordinator

Get involved in our Opportunities

Explore our latest opportunities and let your insights, ideas and experience shape how we work.

Find out more

Get involved in our Groups

Join a Group to take an active role in a specific topic or project and follow developments as they happen.

Find out more