On 23 March 2017 the NIHR School for Public Health Research gathered at The Royal Society, London for its fifth Annual Scientific Meeting. The School’s academic researchers were joined by invited guests from across the public health system for a day of presentations, workshops and debates on translating the knowledge and evidence generated by the School’s research into practice and maximising impact. The event also marked the progress made in the School’s first five years.
The event was attended by over 140 delegates including NIHR SPHR academics/researchers and colleagues from across the public health system.
Professor Jon Nicholl, Director of NIHR SPHR, opened the event with an overview of the School’s accomplishments in its first five years.
Professor Chris Whitty, Chief Scientific Adviser for the Department of Health then gave a presentation on ‘Improving the interface of public health and policy’ followed by a question and answer session.
The day took the format of parallel sessions on each of the School Wide Programmes:
- Public Health Practice Evaluation Scheme (PHPES)
- Health Inequalities – Communities in Control
- Ageing Well
These were followed by another round of parallel sessions on the emerging impact of the School’s research in the following areas:
- Local public health practice and policy
- Health outcomes across the life cycle
- Way of engaging with key stakeholders
After lunch and viewing of the poster exhibition, Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England, gave a presentation on ‘What do current challenges tell us about the research we need?’
This was followed by a lively and thought-provoking discussion with our panel of experts in public health policy, practice and impact assessment, facilitated by Fuse Director Professor Ashley Adamson. Our panel, Professor Annette Boaz (Professor in Health Care Research, Kingston and St George’s), Helen Walters (Public Health Consultant Advisor to NIHR), Robin Ireland (Director of Research (Food Active and Healthy Stadia) Health Equalities Group) and Paul Lincoln (CEO, UK Health Forum) gave presentations and then took questions from delegates.
Following the success of last year’s soapbox session, Professor Mark Petticrew chaired another nail-biting round of ‘Gone in 60 seconds’ with brave volunteers responding to the issues brought up about the future direction and priorities for public health research.
The event was closed by Professor Ashley Adamson who gave a summary look ahead to the School’s next five years, thanked everyone for attending and the organisers for their hard work.
The event was live tweeted and a Storify has been created to capture activity from the day.