The CLAHRC Fellowship is aimed at clinicians, health and social care practitioners, and managers, who would like to work at the interface of research and practice, to develop an understanding of the research environment, and to develop skills in research methodology, service redesign and change management. The focus within the Fellowship programme is on local applied research and evaluation projects, building local capacity for evidence-informed practice, and facilitating networking across health and social care. Since the CLAHRC Fellowships began, 105 Fellowships have been awarded. All of our fellows have come from a wide range of backgrounds — Consultant Psychiatrists, NHS managers, Clinical Psychologists, Consultant Clinical Neuropsychologists, General Practitioners, Registered Nurses, and they hail from across the East of England (Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Great Yarmouth). The fellows are funded by the CLAHRC for one day a week for a year, to carry out a project during their fellowship year under the supervision of one of the CLAHRC’s senior researchers. This can be a specific project chosen by the fellow or they can contribute to a project within one of our CLAHRC themes.  In addition to the research project, we hold a programme of monthly half day teaching workshops and half day action learning sets. The research time, workshop and ALS sessions are agreed with the employer to be protected time for the fellow. The key aim of the Fellowship is to make the programme valuable to the individual fellow and their employing organisation.

CLAHRC Fellowship components

Taught component: Making sense of the research world and promoting the use of research based evidence in healthcare organisations are the main aims of the fellows programme. With this in mind, the taught component of the Fellowship aims to develop an understanding of research and evidence, research methodology, theory of change management, and systems theory applied to healthcare. These skills can be applied in the workplace to effect real change that ultimately brings about improvements in service delivery. Fellows are given reading as preparation for the workshop, and a recommended reading list. The schedule of taught programme and workshops for the 2019 CLAHRC Fellows can be downloaded here. Action learning set: meets for a 3 hour session every alternate month. The sessions are led by Professor Mike Cook. The aims of the ALS are:

  • Learning from experience and sharing that experience with others
  • Being open to the challenge of colleagues and listening to alternative suggestions
  • Having time where you are listened to in a non-judgemental atmosphere
  • Generating more choices about the way forward
  • Reviewing the outcome of actions with the support of fellow set members and sharing the lessons learned

Research project: This can be a specific project chosen by the fellow or he/she can contribute to a project within one of the CLAHRC East of England themes. We encourage prospective fellows to identify their area of interest and make contact with the theme lead in order to decide on a possible project prior to interview. Putting together a proposal for a research project within the CLAHRC is part of the application procedure. This is to ensure that the project is able to be started at the beginning of the Fellowship and is able to be completed within the Fellowship year.

CLAHRC commissioned The National Centre for Post-Qualifying Social Work and Professional Practice at Bournemouth University to complete an independent evaluation of the programme. The evaluation explored the impact of the Fellowship programme on past and present CLAHRC fellows. The learning from this evaluation will help to inform CLAHRC on the future development of the programme. The full evaluation report can be downloaded here.