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Vacancy details

Closing date: 11 December 2020

Other vacancies

Programme Grants for Applied Research - Subcommittee Membership

We are pleased to announce an excellent opportunity has arisen to participate in Programme Grants for Applied Research assessment committees. These prestigious appointments offer senior applied health researchers the chance to take part in and gain experience of making recommendations to NIHR for large scale, high quality programmes of research for the benefit of patients and the NHS.

NIHR Medtech Industry Engagement Advisor

NIHR Medtech Industry Engagement Advisor


Post: NIHR Medtech Industry Engagement Advisor

Accountable to: David King, Director of the NIHR Central Commissioning Facility (CCF)

Time commitment: 1 day a week

Salary: Reimbursement of salary to employing organisation

Tenure: 2 years in the first instance, with the possibility to extend to 5 years subject to review

Proposed start date: 1 April 2021



Job Description


 A key ingredient in NIHR’s success has been working with partners from across the public sector, charities and industry. We do this both to achieve our aims and to improve the UK research ecosystem, thus playing our part in supporting the UK’s world-leading life sciences sector. We support and deliver collaborative life sciences industry research across the innovation pathway, from early translational through to applied health research, giving patients and the public faster access to new diagnostics, therapies and medical devices. The NIHR service offering to support innovation consists of three major pillars, providing access to expertise, clinical trial management and funding. Our ambition is to raise awareness of the NIHR service offering across the whole industry and provide simple routes of engagement.

Taking action to deliver against the government’s strategies and policies we continue to work closely with the entire life sciences industry, both directly and through their trade associations, to strengthen the ecosystem for industry-supported research. While we work with a diverse range of industry sectors, including diagnostics, medical devices, pharma and biotech, a particular focus of our work is and will continue to be supporting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to design and carry out high quality research to provide evidence of feasibility, safety, efficacy and cost-effectiveness of innovative interventions, bringing benefit to patients and supporting growth in the life sciences industry.

Role Summary

As the NIHR Medtech Industry Engagement Advisor, you will be a leading advocate for medtech industry engagement by NIHR, with particular focus on SMEs.  NIHR aims to improve SME engagement in all facets of its activity, spanning programmes, infrastructure and the NIHR Academy, and this role will be vital to delivering that aim. You will provide leadership in maximising opportunities for SMEs to engage with NIHR and will be instrumental to supporting NIHR delivery against a number of Governmental policy levers, including the Accelerated Access Collaborative and the R&D Roadmap.

You will act as an advocate for SMEs within the NIHR health research system, identifying and overcoming barriers to effective SME engagement, providing leadership in maximising NIHR exposure to SMEs, and supporting the development of relevant wider service offerings to the sector.

You will lead a programme of work to provide strategic direction on developing effective ways of working with SMEs, this programme will be set out in an SME engagement strategy and delivered through NIHR Coordinating Centres, NIHR Programme Directors and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).

You will have the following responsibilities:

  • Driving the establishment of the NIHR Life Sciences Industry Programme Board and acting as a co-chair of this Board
  • Overseeing the production and delivery of an NIHR-wide Medtech SME engagement strategy
  • Chairing the NIHR Innovation Observatory Stakeholder Group, advising on strategic development and operational improvement
  • Working with NIHRIO to increase awareness of innovation with the potential to impact at 3, 5 and 10 years to inform the health and care research agenda and prioritisation process
  • Representing the interests of SMEs at the NIHR Strategy Board, the Research Design Service Strategy Group and other fora on behalf of DHSC
  • Providing strategic input in the development and creation of case studies, metrics, and other communications collaterally supporting the NIHR; when required, to act as a spokesperson for NIHR medtech industry engagement
  • To provide regular advice to NIHR staff, Programme Directors, and other stakeholders as to current and future medtech industry engagement activities and issues
  • To work in partnership with the Invention for Innovation’s Programme Director and Funding Board Chair in identifying and delivering priorities to increase engagement with SMEs in the translation funding pathway
  • To collaborate with NOCRI and CRNCC in building a cohesive and joined-up NIHR offering to the industry community
  • To provide thought leadership on the strategic and operational performance of NIHR in relation to current medtech industry engagement, with a focus on connecting and joining up the wider NIHR and the innovation landscape ecosystem wherever possible
  • To promote awareness of NIHR and its offerings to the medtech industry with particular focus on SMEs
  • Embracing patient and public involvement as a core value of the NIHR
  • Championing equality, diversity and inclusion in all activities undertaken and challenging a lack of regard for this

You will be supported in your role by members of the NIHR Life Sciences Industry Programme Board secretariat across all NIHR Co-ordinating Centres and you will report to the Director of CCF, David King.


Person Specification


  • Commitment to the mission and priorities of the NIHR, with a particular focus on promoting the NIHR offering to industry
  • Extensive knowledge of the UK health innovation ecosystem and ability to influence leaders and decision makers in the ecosystem
  • Demonstrable track record of working in leadership roles within the medtech industry, including start-ups and fundraising
  • Ability to enable and support decision-taking and provide advice at a strategic level, exercising judgment across a broad spectrum of complex innovation policy issues
  • A strong sense of fairness, probity and equality and diversity
  • A commitment to improving patient care/population health from NIHR investments


  • Knowledge of the NIHR portfolio and its services for innovation
  • Life sciences industry experience
  • Experience of working internationally, particularly with regard to innovation partnerships and overseas business markets


Submitting an application

For an informal discussion about the role or if you have any questions, please contact Dr Raffaella Roncone at

Formal applications in the form of a CV together with a supporting statement of suitability must be emailed to

The closing date for receipt of completed applications is Friday, 11 December 2020, by no later than 2:00pm. Interviews will most likely be held virtually, in early to mid-January 2021.