NIHR Global Health Policy and Systems Research Projects Call

Closing Date: 19/06/2024

Programme to support applied research that seeks to improve health policy and health services in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Established in 2006 and primarily funded by the Department of Health and Social Care, the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) funds health and care research in the UK.

The NIHR Global Health Policy and Systems Research (Global HPSR) Programme supports research that seeks to improve whole health systems and health services in Official Development Assistance (ODA)-eligible countries on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list through development of equitable partnerships between researchers from the UK and low and middle-income countries (LMICs). It is expected that this will enable stakeholders to identify and address priorities for research in health policy and health systems and develop plans for capacity strengthening and knowledge sharing.

The Global Health Policy and Systems Research Projects Call seeks to support applied research to strengthen health policy and health systems through:

  • High quality research on health policy, health services and health systems that improves outcomes for the most vulnerable people in LMICs and addresses issues of health equity.
  • Addressing applied health policy and systems research questions that target challenges or evidence gaps prioritised by local stakeholders and policymakers.
  • Supporting equitable partnerships and networks between researchers to generate new research knowledge and evidence.
  • Involvement and engagement with policymakers, communities, patients, the public and civil society organisations throughout the research lifecycle.
  • Delivering evidence to inform policy and/or practice eg through engaging with policymakers and informing local, regional or national strategies.
  • Capacity strengthening plans for individuals and institutions in LMICs that are proportionate and relevant to the delivery of the proposed activities.
  • Including appropriate project management and financial/administrative support.
  • Supporting career development for research leaders of the future ie by giving less experienced researchers in LMICs the opportunity to lead or jointly lead on the research proposal with effective mentoring and appropriate support.

Applications in any area of applied health policy and health systems research for the direct and primary benefit of people living in one or more ODA-eligible country/ies will be considered. NIHR strongly encourages applications that address health systems elements, including aspects of leadership and governance, financing, health workforce, information systems, quality of care and health service delivery, health services management, community engagement structures, and impacts of broader determinants of health. Where research is focused on a specific health problem or service, the proposal should make clear how it also addresses the wider system linkages and influences.

This is an open/researcher-led call, however, NIHR remains interested in its previously published priority area, which is strengthening health systems in primary care settings and community care settings.

NIHR also welcomes applications under the following cross-cutting themes:

  • Scalability, cost-effectiveness, affordability and stakeholder engagement in relation to integrating health services.
  • Quality of care or perceptions of quality of care, identification of barriers to quality in health systems (at any/all levels of community, primary care, secondary or tertiary care).
  • Health workforce management and planning, using innovative technologies within health system settings, innovations in team configurations and skills mix, education and training needs.
  • Improving data quality and use in health system planning, research on digital solutions, using data to improve efficiency in health system operations.

NIHR expects research teams to be multidisciplinary, including experts from social sciences, health economics, political science and related disciplines, epidemiology, medical statistics, experts in community engagement, and community groups.

Funding body National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR)
Maximum value £800,000
Reference ID S26155
Category Medical Research
Economic and Social Research
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Fund or call Fund