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NIHR Research Delivery Network National Specialty Lead (Secondment)


Fixed Term

Closing date

25 February 2024

Interview date






Working at the NIHR

About the role

Do you want to work for an outstanding organisation at the forefront of Health and Care research delivery?

The University of Leeds has been chosen by the Department of Health and Social Care to lead the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Research Delivery Network (RDN). The NIHR RDN provides the infrastructure that allows high-quality clinical research to take place in health and care settings in England. This includes assisting researchers and funders to deliver their studies in health and care settings, and supporting the research community to maximise access to leading-edge approaches and innovation, through research participation, so that patients can benefit from new and better treatments and models of care.

We are seeking to appoint individuals with extensive experience of senior leadership within a health or care specialty to 30 National Specialty Lead part-time roles to act as high calibre ambassadors for the NIHR RDN and to provide senior leadership and strategic direction for matters of research delivery across the relevant specialty.

The roles are available in the following Specialties on a 0.1 Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) basis (more FTE may be available for several posts as detailed in the further particulars): Ageing; Anaesthesia, Perioperative Medicine and Pain Management; Cancer; Cardiovascular; Children; Critical Care; Dementia & Neurodegeneration; Dermatology; Diabetes, Metabolic & endocrine; Ear, Nose & Throat; Gastroenterology & Hepatology; Genetics; General Practice; Haematology; Imaging; Infection; Mental Health; Musculoskeletal & Orthopaedics; Neurology; Ophthalmology; Oral & Dental; Palliative Care; Public Health; Renal; Reproductive Health & Childbirth; Respiratory; Social Care; Stroke; Surgery; Trauma & Emergency Care.

These high-profile national roles will report into the RDN Strategic Development Director and form part of the RDN National Specialty and Setting Leadership team, and will proactively develop effective relationships with decision-makers in the public sector, charity and life science organisations (non-commercial, pharma, medtech, diagnostics and biotech) and other related external stakeholders to further the aims of the NIHR RDN. 

What you will bring to the role

Essential requirements for the role:

● Extensive experience of senior leadership in a health or care organisation.
● Extensive experience of leading in the relevant Specialty area, developing that Specialty collaboratively with patients and other stakeholders and establishing and sustaining outstanding service and a high-performance management culture.
● Significant experience of delivering research as an Investigator in the relevant Specialty area and excellent general research delivery expertise.
 Proven ability to translate strategic vision into reality at national scale, and to grasp complex policy, political and operational issues.
● Comprehensive knowledge of national systems, structures and processes for supporting health and care research delivery across a range of settings and of priorities and challenges in this environment.
 Proven skills in developing creative and innovative solutions, with evidence of motivating, supporting and coaching colleagues.
● The ability to work collaboratively, with evidence of successfully developing and maintaining effective working relationships with a wide range of internal and external partners and stakeholders.
● Highly developed communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to articulate priorities, and effectively to engage and influence others at all levels internally and externally, including through presentations and public speaking.
● Highly developed emotional intelligence and resilience and the ability to operate effectively in an ambiguous and uncertain environment.
● Strong team player with the ability to act as a good citizen within the network representing a diversity of views.
● Politically astute and sensitive to the priorities and dynamics of a complex organisation.

Essential requirements specific to this role:

The National Specialty Lead must:
● Be able to evidence clinical (includes all health professions), social care, or public health professional status, for example by being registered on the GMC Specialist Register, GMC General Practice register, NMC register, HCPC UK register or relevant professional register.
● Be an acknowledged opinion leader on research delivery within the relevant specialty, with a breadth of appropriate knowledge.

How to apply

Are you interested in learning more about this exciting position with the NIHR? Please apply directly via our vacancy page.

This role is with NIHR Clinical Research Network Coordinating Centre (CRNCC) and is hosted by the University of Leeds.