The National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) funds, enables and delivers world-leading health and social care research that improves people’s health and wellbeing and promotes economic growth.

The PHIRST scheme links up academic teams with local authorities to evaluate work that is already happening in local government across the UK. A blog by Helen Walters, NIHR Public Health Consultant Advisor provides the thinking behind its creation.


The NIHR Public Health Research Programme has appointed six academic teams, via the PHIRST scheme. The teams are ready to work with local authorities to co-produce research on the public health impacts of initiatives. The academic teams are fully funded to co-design and undertake robust research in partnership with local authorities

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