In 2022, there were 52 participants from ARC South London. In 2023 the Academy opened to all ARCs in London and increased to 72 participants. In January 2024, the Academy will welcome participants from all NIHR Applied Research Collaborations in England, including partner organisations (register your interest). The course is delivered mainly online and is free.

The Academy is aimed at researchers and professionals from clinical and non-clinical backgrounds, and public members involved in research. People from diverse backgrounds are particularly encouraged to apply. It was developed by Professor Cilla Harries, ARC South London’s deputy theme lead for capacity development and Head of the Graduate Research School and Researcher Development at Kingston University.

Feedback from participants in 2022 show that the Academy is highly valued:

  • 100% agreed the course met or exceeded their expectations
  • 91% agree or strongly agree the information is pitched at the right level for them
  • 87% said they are likely or very likely to recommend the course to a colleague or friend
  • 78% agree or strongly agree that the course covers relevant topics

We’re delighted that the Applied Research Leadership Academy has had such positive feedback and that we have attracted a range of people from different career backgrounds. We aim to build on its strengths and further enhance the training based on participants’ feedback

Professor Cilla Harries, ARC South London’s deputy theme lead for capacity development

The lecture programme

The lecture programme is delivered over six months. Weekly sessions are held online during lunchtime, with some opportunities for meeting in-person, designed to fit around participants’ teaching, practice, caring and other responsibilities. The lecture programme is provided by highly experienced research leaders, so everyone can gain insights from their expertise. Group work and peer mentorship activities bring together those at similar levels of experience to optimise effective learning. In this way, the Academy is designed to accommodate participants with a wide range of levels of experience in research leadership, from novice to expert. The Academy also provides mentoring and networking opportunities.

Topics that were most valued by recent participants were:

  • developing research collaborations and proposals
  • costing up and managing research grants
  • ensuring diversity and inclusion in research, developing a theory of change
  • involving patients and members of the public in research
  • cultivating excellence in research environments
  • strategies for increasing research impact such as through influencing policy change.

Feedback from participants in 2022

The course increased my enthusiasm and confidence to reach out to people in the research and academic world as a result of seeing such high-profile researchers presenting to the group in a supportive, open and encouraging way

Academy participant in 2022

This course helped me to develop a deeper understanding of research leadership qualities and provided me with strategies, ideas, and directions on how to improve my research career

Academy participant in 2022

It provided me with insights into how to develop myself as a leader, based on the sharing of other experiences from people in my action learning sets, the breakout discussions and the formal lectures. I now have more understanding and a broader skill set to implement in my research work

Academy participant in 2022

Register your interest and find out more