The aim of the NIHR Policy Research Unit (PRU) in Behavioural Science is to inform government policy on health, preventing ill-health and health systems. We use behavioural science evidence, theory and methods to support decision-making.
Established in 2019, the Unit is a collaboration between Newcastle University, University College London, University of Warwick, and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. We have a collaborating network of experts in public health and public and patient involvement (PPI).
We bring together researchers with a range of disciplinary backgrounds and expertise, to support policy makers in policy design, development, evaluation and implementation. We work closely with the Department of Health and Social Care and in collaboration with other Policy Research Units. This enables us to provide the best evidence and advice, in a timely way, for the benefit of the public and patients.
Working with Government
The Unit works with Government, in particular the Department for Health and Social Care, and government and arms-length bodies.
Find out more about us here.
Keeping in touch
Sometimes our research projects may take several months to get started, but we’ll aim to keep in touch with you via the VOICE platform with regular project updates.
In future we hope to develop a newsletter for our contributors. Please email us at: email@example.com to sign up.
This project is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) [Policy Research Unit in Behavioural Science (project reference PR-PRU-1217-20501)].
We currently have three research projects, Choose Well, Shared Medical Appointments and Audit and Feedback. As our projects develop, we’ll add more detail about them.
We will be inviting members to contribute to a range of projects over the next four years and you can sign up to be involved by joining this group.
Our funders, NIHR, define public involvement in research as research conducted ‘with’ or ‘by’ members of the public, rather than to them. This can include working with research funders, offering advice as a member of a steering group and contributing to research.
When we use the term ‘public’ we are including patients, potential patients, carers and people who use health and social care services. It also includes people from organisations that represent people who use services. Whilst we are all, former or potential users of health and social care services, there is a distinction between the perspectives of the public and the perspectives of people who have a professional role in health and social care services.
The Unit works in collaboration with Voice, ensuring that patients and the public are at the centre of our research. We also have public members on our Scientific Advisory Board and Management Board to make sure views are represented at every level.
How much time do I need to give?
We might only call on you to take part in projects once a year or you could be asked to review documents up to three times a year.
For participation in focus groups, we estimate this could take up to three hours of your time for each session and this will always be confirmed in advance.
All of our opportunities will be advertised on the VOICE platform.
Most of our PPIE work will involve you taking part in a focus group, interview or completing a questionnaire.
Some of our work involves giving your perspective on a prospective policy and you might be asked to provide a written response on documents.
Will I get paid? Will you reimburse my travel expenses?
You’ll be reimbursed for any time given to the projects and we’ll pay travel and expenses at the Newcastle University rates.
Further details will be provided for each opportunity we advertise.