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NIHR announces 46 Senior Investigators for 2019


The NIHR has announced the names of the 46 researchers who have been appointed as NIHR Senior Investigators in the 2019 round of awards.

Following an open competition, 26 researchers from across the country have been newly appointed as NIHR Senior Investigators for a three to five year term.

The new Senior Investigators join 20 researchers who have been reappointed as Senior Investigators, either as current or previous award holders, bringing the total number of awards this year to 46 researchers.

Senior Investigators, the NIHR’s senior leaders, are critical to the ongoing success of the NIHR and developing the health research capability fit for the challenges we must meet to improve the health of the nation. NIHR Senior Investigators provide research leadership to the NIHR, promoting clinical and applied research in health and social care, and constitute a network of experts able to provide advice to the Department of Health and Social Care.

NIHR Senior Investigator status is awarded on the basis of a number of competitive criteria: quality and volume of internationally excellent research; its relevance to patients and the public; impact on improvements in healthcare and public health; research leadership; contribution to NIHR; engagement of patients and the public with their research; and engagement of healthcare policy makers and planners.

An independent expert panel chaired by Professor Marion Walker advised on the 2019 appointments.

Senior Investigators are able to occupy their positions for no more than two terms, in order to ensure turnover. This creates opportunities for new researchers to participate in NIHR at this level, incentivising the research community while maintaining the college of Senior Investigators at a productive size.

On completion of a second successful term, Senior Investigators are awarded the title Senior Investigator Emeritus in recognition of the work they have carried out and continue to do as long as they are in substantive employment in England.

Eighteen new NIHR Emeritus Senior Investigators have been created in 2019, giving a total of 145 Emeritus Senior Investigators.

It is a considerable achievement to attain Emeritus status, holders having succeeded twice in achieving Senior Investigator status in open competition and completed two terms as a Senior Investigator.

Full details of the 2019 NIHR Senior Investigator and Senior Investigator Emeritus appointments are available on the NIHR website. Full details of all NIHR Senior Investigators are available on the NIHR Senior Investigators Directory, which is updated in April each year.

The 2020 NIHR Senior Investigator competition, the 13th annual round of awards, will be announced in summer 2019. Leading researchers funded by the NIHR and who are employed by a NHS Trust, university or charity based in England are encouraged to apply. Further details about the competition will be made available on the NIHR website.