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NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research (PGfAR) funds collaborative, multidisciplinary programmes of applied research to solve health and social care challenges.
Programme Development Grants (PDG) are available for researchers to carry out targeted preparatory work to strengthen a future full PGfAR application and to enhance the outcomes of existing PGfAR awards.
The aim of NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research (PGfAR) is to deliver research findings that will lead to clear and identifiable patient, service user or carer benefits, typically through promotion of health and wellbeing, prevention of ill health, and optimal disease management (including safety and quality).
PGfAR is researcher led and does not commission research on specific topics. However, research proposals must be in an area of priority or need for the NHS, public health or the social care sector, with particular emphasis on health and social care areas that cause significant burden where other research funders may not be focused, or where insufficient funding is available.
The awards fund NHS, public health and social care practitioners to work together with academic partners to tackle health and social care problems, and provide some stability of funding to support the long-term development of top quality applied research groups.
In recognition of the complex biopsychosocial influences at play in many multiple long-term conditions, programmes seeking to address the integration of health and social care to improve patient, service user and carer outcomes, and those that include work packages aimed at tackling the social care dimension of healthcare problems, are particularly welcome.
Programmes that use diverse methodological approaches to demonstrate patient, service user or carer benefits at an individual or population level, and/or include work packages specifically aimed at addressing important methodological issues in applied health and social care research methodology, are also encouraged.
PGfAR funds programmes of applied research that generally comprise a number of high quality interrelated projects, usually described in separate work packages, that form a coherent theme, where added value is gained from the combination of the various strands of research.
The research programme should:
All NHS bodies and other providers of NHS services in England may apply for programme awards, in collaboration with an appropriate academic partner or partners. For more information see our tips for applying to PGfAR.
The amount awarded and the length of the funding period depends on the nature of the proposed work. Funding in excess of £2.5 million beyond 6 years will be unusual.
It is anticipated that programmes using novel designs will facilitate shorter, more efficient, less expensive programmes. As a guide, such programmes might be delivered over 3 years with costs of £1-1.5m.
Potential applicants can undertake appropriate preparatory work through a Programme Development Grant to strengthen their future programme.
PGfAR has three funding opportunities a year that typically launch in February, June and October. See the dates for our funding competitions.
PGfAR has a two stage application process. Please see the applicant guidance for stage 1 and stage 2, and the supporting information, to find out more. For detailed finance guidance, please see the detailed budget section in the guidance for stage 2 applications (section 11). Potential applicants can seek advice on their proposal from the programme team through the pre-submission enquiry form.
Research proposals are submitted to PGfAR online through the Research Management System. We supply template application forms for stage 1 and stage 2 to help researchers prepare their proposal ahead of submission.
PGfAR will support:
The programme will not support:
The selection criteria used by our funding committees include:
PGfAR recommends research proposals for funding through its main selection committee and its subcommittees. Programme Development Grant applications are assessed by the same committees.
The stage 2 subcommittees are standing committees, whereas the stage 1 subcommittee and main selection committees are convened for each funding competition.
Proposals are first assessed by the stage 1 subcommittee, and then shortlisted proposals are sent for methodological review. Stage 2 proposals are sent for peer review, before being assessed by the stage 2 subcommittees. The outcomes from each stage 2 subcommittee are then discussed and reviewed by the main selection committee.
The main selection committee recommends projects for funding to the Department of Health and Social Care, which approves which projects should be funded.
Members of NIHR committees are required to declare any interests which conflict, or may be considered to conflict, with NIHR business, or may be perceived as influencing decisions made in the course of their work within NIHR programmes. All members are asked to complete the Register of Interest form (annually), which is intended to capture long term predictable interests that could be perceived to lead to conflicts of interest. These and other interests are judged on a case by case basis at individual meetings.
Professor Elaine Hay is Programme Director of PGfAR.
We offer a wide variety of assistance during all stages of the research process. If in doubt, please get in touch.
Tel: 020 8843 8056
Our operating hours are 9.00am to 5.00pm
Mr Rajinder Flora
Senior Programme Managers
Dr Shaun McMaster
Dr Katie Cook
Mr Thomas Hutchinson
Ms Fiona Giles
Dr Ramnath Elaswarapu
Ms Saima Siddiqui
Senior Research Officer
Ms Saprina Harrison
Ms Amrit Mann
Ms Batool Khan
Ms Mandy Norton
NIHR Central Commissioning Facility
15 Church Street
Twickenham TW1 3NL
Applications are invited for Stage 1 proposals to develop programmes of applied health research.
Minutes of the Programme Grants for Applied Research Competition 34 Stage 1
Minutes of the PGfAR Competition 32 Stage 2 Sub-Committee B
Minutes of the PGfAR Competition 32 Stage 2 Sub-Committee C
Minutes of the PGfAR Competition 33 Stage 1
Details of what support the Research Design Service can offer.