Head of Health Research Networks

Posted 29 January by Hunter Merrifield

We are seeking to recruit a Head of Research Networks for Health Services for Health Services Research UK and the NIHR CLAHRC Partnership Programme for our client, a membership body based in London's vibrant West End.

Both of these networks strive to bring together the producers and users of applied health research to improve services and benefit patients.

This is an exciting role for someone who believes in the importance of research to transform practice. The role will provide you with a unique opportunity to interact with stakeholders at all levels across research and health care and to develop these important networks for maximum impact.

The ideal candidate will have excellent communication skills, someone who enjoys and thrives on new media platforms to develop working networks, an effective grasp of project and programme management and a genuine commitment to health research.

  • Working with the Chair, the Board and Members of the network to shape and lead the range of activities. Supported by other members of the Health Research Networks team.
  • Specific responsibilities in supporting the Health Services Research Network will include:
    • Leading on network development to build reach across the health services research and practice constituencies, including maintaining and developing new partnership working and membership engagement.
    • Supporting the delivery of network activities, including the annual Symposium, research meetings, evening lectures and networking events.
    • Supporting the network's policy influencing and lobbying aims by developing policy consultations and briefing papers working with board members.

NIHR CLAHRC Partnership Programme

  • Working with the NIHR CLAHRC Directors, Programme Managers and Leads and NIHR to deliver the range of activities detailed in the CLAHRC Partnership Programme agreement. Supported by other members of the Health Research Networks team.
  • Specific responsibilities in supporting the NIHR CLAHRC Partnership Programme will include:
    • Providing national network support to the NIHR CLAHRCs including convening meetings and coordinating publications on national themes.
  • Shaping and delivering external strategic communications and collective policy responses via multiple channels. Maintaining key external relationships with governmental, health and research bodies.
    • Providing secretariat for the national NIHR CLAHRC Directors' group and other cross-functional groups, including agenda setting, involving key stakeholders, inviting guest speakers and reviewing agreed actions.
    • Maintaining the national CLAHRC project database and newsletters.
    • Enabling individual CLAHRCs to network and learn from each other by supporting learning events and working groups. Facilitating internal communications between CLAHRCs.
  • Any other duties as required by the Director of Policy or line manager, cognate with the responsibilities set out above.

Person Specification


  • Educated to degree level.
  • Strong project and programme management skills - able to work effectively on a range of projects and manage one's own workload to tight deadlines.
  • Able to analyse complex information, distil the key issues, identify the principal messages for different audiences.
  • Strong communication skills - written and oral. Able to present complex issues in a simple and straightforward manner. Confident to write/edit reports of research meetings, research briefings and digests.
  • Confidence and capability to work with senior stakeholders.
  • Strong team skills. Able to work with colleagues and to communicate effectively at senior level. Also able to build positive relationships with colleagues inside and outside the organisation.
    • Flexible approach - able to respond flexibly to new developments and to adjust priorities accordingly.


    • Knowledge and/or experience of health services and applied research.
    • Knowledge and/or experience of supporting and developing knowledge networks or engaging in knowledge mobilisation activities.

Huntress Search Ltd does not discriminate on the grounds of 'protected characteristics' as defined under the Equality Act and other relevant UK legislation.

Huntress Search Ltd acts as a Recruitment Agency in relation to all Permanent roles and as a Recruitment Business in relation to all Temporary roles.

PLEASE NOTE: We can only consider applications from candidates who have the right to work in the UK.

Reference: 34339635

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