The purpose of Research Governance is to ensure the highest standards of quality in research, which complies with all relevant legislation and the UK Policy Framework for Health and Social Care Research which was published in November 2017. All University health & social care research is subject to the UK Policy Framework.

The policy framework applies to Health and Social Care Research involving NHS patients, service users or their relatives or carers and covers:

  • scientific quality
  • standards of ethics,
  • HRA approvals and permissions
  • NHS R&D capacity and capability
  • insurance and indemnity, and
  • all related management aspects in the setting up, conduct, reporting and progression of the health or social care research

Therefore, it forms the base of the principles to protect and promote the interests of NHS patients, service users and the public in health and social care research.

Sponsorship

The sponsor is the individual, organisation or partnership that takes on overall responsibility for proportionate, effective arrangements being in place to set up, run and report a research project. Under the UK Policy Framework for Health and Social Care Research, all health and social care research should have a sponsor.

  • The sponsor is normally expected to be the employer of the chief investigator in the case of non-commercial research or the Funder in the case of Commercial research.
  • Sponsors of clinical trials of investigational medicinal products (CTMIPs) have particular legal duties.
  • University accepts the role of sponsor for all educational research conducted by their own students, unless the student is employed by a health or social care provider that prefers to take on this role.
  • Sponsors of educational research should ensure that supervisors can and do carry out the activities involved in fulfilling this role.
  • Where the academic supervisor cannot adequately satisfy the sponsor’s oversight responsibilities due to location or expertise, the sponsor should agree co-supervision arrangements with a local care practitioner.

Requesting SU Sponsorship

If your research project involves any of the sponsorship categories listed, the project will need to be sponsored and you will need to complete a SU Sponsorship Application Form and forward with accompanying documents to the research governance mailbox. This will start a review process by the research governance team and please allow 10 days for a full review. 

The project may also need to go to:

  • NHS Ethics Committee (REC) via the IRAS online system
  • HRA permissions/approval
  • NHS trust capacity and capability confirmation process.

When can I start?

Before any research can begin, all ethical and other relevant permissions must be granted. The Researcher will then receive a start letter from research governance confirming University sponsorship.

Learn more

The HRA provides a website with information on planning and preparation for the research approval and the activities you need to complete. It highlights best practice, legal frameworks and other resources and will also keep you up to date with the latest changes and updates to regulations.