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Senior Research Associate, NIHR Innovation Observatory Health Innovations (Medicines)

Requisition ID:  24921

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Fixed Term
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date:  10-Jan-2023


We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


What’s in it for you? Newcastle University is a great place to work, with excellent benefits. We have a generous holiday package; plus the opportunity to buy more, great pension schemes and a number of health and wellbeing initiatives to support you.


Newcastle is an inclusive global University community where everyone is treated with dignity and respect.  As a University of Sanctuary, we aim to provide a welcoming place of safety for all, offering opportunities to people fleeing violence and persecution.


Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.


Salary: £43,414 to £46,047 per annum


Closing Date: 15 February 2023


The Role


We have an exciting opportunity for an experienced senior researcher with knowledge of the healthcare regulatory and market access processes for medicines, together with experience in translational insights, early awareness signalling, horizon scanning or other research areas that will support and shape national priority setting and decision-making. The successful candidate will shape and deliver a range of research projects, provide oversight for key outputs to support our stakeholders, and supervise/mentor junior researchers in horizon scanning and evidence synthesis activities. 


The role will require significant collaboration with external stakeholders (from NICE NIHR, the Accelerated Access Collaborative, NHS England, Department of Health & Social Care, plus others) to design, implement and deliver national innovative horizon scanning intelligence and evidence to support national decision making around health and social care innovation in medicines.


This is a national role based in our exciting initiative, the National Institute for Health Care Research Innovation Observatory. Using next generation digital analytics, we bring together expertise in order to observe, translate and report on health innovation for the UK and beyond, helping shape future health provision. 


The NIHR Innovation Observatory is a £26M initiative, funded by the National Institute for Health Care Research, based at Newcastle University with an academic home in the Population Health Sciences Institute. The Innovation Observatory brings together information specialists, data scientists, text mining, horizon scanning and evidence synthesis researchers to provide essential intelligence to several national agencies, whilst developing new methodology and novel AI tools. The successful candidate will play a pivotal role in shaping our proactive research agenda.


This post is available until 31 March 2026.

For informal queries please contact:  

The Chief Operating Officer, Dr Teresa Fortune,


Key Accountabilities

•    Show academic leadership in research methods and intelligence retrieval and synthesis methods across the group and Institute
•    Carry out research within agreed timelines, meeting project milestones and to an appropriate standard 
•    Lead on multi-disciplinary research at the intersection of health innovation, horizon scanning, and evidence synthesis methods as it relates to innovation in medicine
•    Show a commitment to high quality research and a high level of accuracy and attention to detail
•    Monitor workload and supervise junior staff who may be working on several projects 
•    Prepare bids for submission to prestigious funders
•    Publish in peer reviewed journals and present findings at conferences nationally and internationally
•    Lead on the design, development, and deployment of novel Horizon scanning methods to support Innovation Observatory processes and external (i.e., public) facing outputs 
•    Contribute to the development of a series of relevant short courses in horizon scanning, leading on relevant courses whilst supporting colleagues in the development of others.
•    Undertake teaching, in relevant areas, on the PHSI and Faculty of Medical Science postgraduate and undergraduate courses as required 
•    Build internal and external contacts and participate in networks for the exchange of information and to form relationships for future collaboration
•    Identify and undertake a programme of professional development, including further training in research methods and other transferable skills.
•    To contribute to the wider activities of the Innovation Observatory 
•    Carry out administrative tasks and other duties to support the Innovation Observatory as required by the Director (IO) or Dean (NUPHSI)


The Person


Knowledge, Skills, and Experience

•    Knowledge of horizon scanning/early awareness and/or evidence synthesis research methods
•    Knowledge of and commitment to using best practices in research project management 
•    Demonstrable understanding of the evaluation of the latest breakthrough medicines 
•    Significant knowledge of the healthcare regulatory and market access processes for medicines
•    Experience of engagement with national stakeholders
•    Experience of leading a team to deliver projects within agreed timelines/resources, meeting project milestones and producing research to an appropriate standard
•    Ability to contribute to broader organisational and management processes and to provide leadership, co-ordinating the work of other colleagues 
•    Ability to build effective relationships with a range of different stakeholders, across different levels
•    A strong track record of peer reviewed publications and wider dissemination activities
•    Experience of research project management and delivery
•    Ability to communicate effectively and confidently to a range of audiences and stakeholders
•    Evidence of the ability to deliver high-quality work within agreed timelines
•    Ability to meet deadlines, prioritise and to manage conflicting priorities
•    Aptitude to work flexibly and cooperatively with others
•    Experience of undertaking systematic reviews, rapid reviews, and scoping reviews (Desirable)


Attributes and Behaviour

•    Ability to work independently and as a member of a team
•    Excellent organisational, communication and interpersonal skills
•    Ability to maintain confidentiality
•    High level of attention to detail and accuracy
•    Motivated, proactive researcher
•    Experience of effectively managing and taking responsibility for own workload



•    A PhD or MSc in a relevant topic area, for example pharmacy, health service research, public health, regulatory science, information science or closely related subject or significant relevant experience



The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University is also a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.


Requisition ID: 24921