Using Evidence to Influence Policy and Practice - NIHR Researchfish Update: 2017

January 3, 2018


The NIHR (National Institute for Health Research) has published it's 2017 Researchfish Update that examines the NIHR's use of the data gathered from 7000 personal and research awards in Researchfish, tracking information on the outputs, outcomes and impact of their funded research since 2012.


The information gathered using Researchfish is reported to both the Government and the public to demonstrate the need for further pioneering research for the benefit of patients and the economy.


Researchfish allows the NIHR to collect detailed information directly from NIHR-funded Researchers during the award and for a period of 5 years afterwards. This allows them to maintain a longer-term relationship with award holders and capture new developments and impacts arising from their research during and after award completion.


The update covers how the Researchfish data is used:


  • To build impact case studies and write reports to share with stakeholders

  • In impact assessment exercises for the NIHR Public Health Research programme and Public Health Overview, and the NIHR/MRC Efficacy and Mechanism Evaluation programme

  • Undertake collaborative work with Marie Curie using Researchfish data to assess the impact of our combined investment in palliative and end of life care research

  • To populate the threaded publication information on the NIHR Journals Library


Also, NIHR award holders, through Researchfish, have reported:


  • Influencing the development of policy – e.g. Since 2012, NIHR award holders reported giving evidence to a government review 146 times

  • Influencing the development of practice – e.g. Since 2012, NIHR award holders reported membership or participation in 1344 committees and consultations


Dr Sarah Thomas, NIHR Researchfish Lead, said “This update demonstrates the value of our Researchfish data in helping us to understand the impact of our research portfolio. We are developing our approach to impact assessment, and the richness and detail our researchers provide in their Researchfish returns is invaluable in helping us to understand the difference NIHR research makes.”


The NIHR Researchfish Update: 2017 can be found here.


Registration has now opened for two webinars explaining how the NIHR uses Researchfish:


The webinar for research organisations runs from 10-11am on Wednesday, 10 January 2018.


A separate webinar for researchers takes place from 10-11am, on Wednesday, 14 February 2018.


For more details visit the My Researchfish submission section of the NIHR website.


This blog was also published on the NIHR website.

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