Partnerships are at the heart of the Oxford BRC, which links a hospital and a university along with organisations that invest in research and people whom we hope will benefit from that research.
Partnerships for Health, Wealth and Innovation (PHWI) seeks to strengthen dimensions of the BRC’s partnerships as follows:
Partnerships with patients and members of the public to ensure relevance and accountability
The BRC aims to ensure that its research addresses patients’ priorities and is a good use of public funds. The PHWI steering group will be chaired by a member of the community and include strong representation from patients. We will support all BRC themes to value the patient’s perspective; to integrate patient involvement and public engagement into all aspects of their research activity; to measure their success and to improve their performance year-on-year.
If you are a patient or member of the public and you wish to get involved with the work of the BRC, please visit the page on Our Work with Patients and the Public.
Partnerships with industry to maximise opportunities for innovation
Oxfordshire’s medical and life sciences sector brings together over 5,000 researchers, 500 medical technology companies and an outstanding track record of biotechnology and life sciences innovation. We aim to strengthen and support these public–private partnerships, in order to keep Oxford at the leading edge of biomedical innovation in 2017–22.
Partnerships across the BRC research themes to ensure programme-wide learning
The BRC has 16 different clinical themes, organised into four clusters, and four cross-cutting themes. In large and complex research structures such as this, there is a danger that individual research teams could become isolated and lose the sense of shared endeavour. By drawing out common challenges and emerging patterns across the BRC, we will provide a sense of coherence and generate knowledge that supports and improves the effectiveness of the BRC as a whole.
Partnerships with clinical services to ensure research discoveries are rapidly implemented into practice
Historically, there has been an unacceptable delay between doing academic research and implementing the findings in a way that benefits patients. We know that when research ideas come directly from front-line clinical practice and scientists working closely with clinicians to design and undertake research studies, this “bench to bedside translational gap” can be bridged more effectively. By working on knowledge translation and implementation science we aim to help get research discoveries rapidly into practice.
Partnerships with policymakers to shape the future of health services and health research
One of the BRC’s long-term goals is to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of health services; another is to inform local, national and international policy on life sciences, technology, healthcare and scientific research. The work of the Oxford BRC has implications, for example for the national organisation of clinical services and clinical practice guidelines; for regulatory processes for drugs and medical devices; and for the conduct and governance of clinical trials and big data research. We will draw on Oxford’s existing links to local and national policymakers and to international bodies in science and healthcare.
Partnerships across different scientific disciplines to develop new avenues of research
The BRC provides exciting opportunities for interdisciplinary collaborations between biomedical scientists and academics from complementary fields including statistics, economics, computer science, business studies, and the humanities and social sciences. Interdisciplinary research enables large and ambitious projects, for example, multi-centre clinical trials or big data analytics. It also allows this theme to do research on research by asking over-arching questions about how to optimise the research process, improve the governance and ethics of research, train and support young researchers, work with industry and government, and implement the findings of research in clinical practice.
The PHWI cross-cutting theme includes input from the following groups:
- BRC Patient and Public Involvement (oxfordbrc.nihr.ac.uk/public/our-work-with-patients-and-the-public)
- Oxford Medical Sciences Division Business Development Team (medsci.ox.ac.uk/support-services/teams/business-development)
- Oxford Structural Genomics Consortium (thesgc.org)
- Oxford Biodesign Programme (oxfordbiodesign.org)
- Oxford Centre for Statistics in Medicine (csm.ox.ac.uk/team)
- Oxford Health Economics Research Centre (herc.ox.ac.uk)
- Oxford BRC Ethics (ndph.ox.ac.uk/team/mark-sheehan)
- Oxford University Clinical Academic Graduate School (oucags.ox.ac.uk)