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Get Involved

The School has many diverse audiences nationally and locally. Our engagement strategy focuses on how we engage with professionals working in local public health systems in any sector, with members of the public, and with the wider public health community.

There are many ways to engage with SPHR:

The Public Health Practice Evaluation Scheme (PHPES) enables people working in public health who are delivering innovative projects and initiatives aimed at improving health, to work in partnership with SPHR to conduct rigorous evaluations of their cost-effectiveness. Further details of the scheme, including how and when to apply are available here.

NIHR School for Public Health Advisory Board membership includes individuals from the public, professional bodies relating to public health and the academic field. The School’s funded research programmes and projects as well as the School members’ Local Advisory group include individuals from the public and professional bodies.

Public involvement & engagement: we have a strategy for involving the public in all stages of our research and for engaging with the wider public over the period 2019-22. It was informed by a review of existing guidance on good practice and a detailed and substantial internal review of previous public involvement and engagement (PI&E) practice in SPHR. This review was guided by a panel of members of public with experience of SPHR research and a review of public involvement in our research between 2012-2017. We found evidence of good practice in public involvement across the School but also things that can be improved.  A public panel provided advice on the development of the strategy and responses from a public consultation informed the production of the final version. Following the review of public involvement in SPHR research 2012-17, members of the SPHR public advisory panel have co-produced a training resource based on the findings.

The strategy sets out our vision for public involvement and engagement in our research; the values that underpin our approach; what we mean by public involvement and engagement; why we think it is important and the objectives we have set ourselves in order to achieve our vision (see below). Our action plan to deliver on these objectives is included in Appendix 1 of the strategy.

Our vision for public involvement & engagement
Our vision is to have inclusive public involvement and engagement in our research and to give members of the public real influence in our decision-making processes.

We believe that by providing opportunities for all sectors of the population to get involved in and engage with our research we will increase our accountability for the way we spend the public funds we receive. By embedding public involvement and engagement in our usual practice we will maximise the relevance, timeliness, utility and uptake of our research.

We will use our distinctive position as a centre of excellence to make a significant contribution to the evidence base on effective public involvement and engagement in public health research.

NIHR SPHR Public Partners Network (PPaN)
If you are a member of the public involved in research in the NIHR School for Public Health Research then you can join our Public Partners Network (PPaN).

The SPHR Public Partners Network provides opportunities for…
–   Connecting public partners across SPHR
–   Advising SPHR on how to involve the public effectively
–   Linking public partners with SPHR staff for public involvement in research and co-production opportunities
–   Developing public partners through training and support beyond that provided through SPHR projects
–   Reflecting on the impact of public partners on SPHR research and public partners’ experiences of being involved
–   Contributing to more inclusive public involvement at the strategic level

The first meeting of the SPHR Public Partners Network will take place in Autumn 2020. This will most likely be a virtual meeting. We can provide you with information and support about attending virtual meetings.

We have set up an email list of the SPHR public partners so that we can let you know about the Public Partners Network and what is happening across SPHR research projects.  To register for the email list please complete this form.

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