Health Research Board (HRB)

Founding year

1986

History

The Health Research Board (HRB) was founded in 1986 as a statutory body of the Irish Department of Health. It currently has an annual budget of €45 million and a staff of 60. In addition to supporting research across the broad spectrum of health research, from applied biomedical research through to applied health services research, the HRB supports five National Information Systems. These databases collect national data on intellectual, physical and sensory disability, psychiatric in-patient admissions, drug treatment and drug-related deaths.

ENRIO member since

2009

Structure

The HRB is a statutory body under the aegis of the Department of Health

Main Tasks

The HRB funds a variety of RPOs to conduct research across a broad range of health issues. The focus is on generating evidence that can be applied in health policy and clinical practice. This is achieved through support for five focus areas, namely:

Focus 1: Support innovative, investigator-led and internationally competitive research to address major health challenges in society
Objective 1.1: Support high-quality, investigator-led, internationally competitive research
Objective 1.2: Develop and implement co-funding opportunities with international agencies and institutions

Focus 2: Support trials and healthcare interventions, in order to improve health outcomes and health service delivery
Objective 2.1: Support the design, conduct and evaluation of trials and intervention studies
Objective 2.2: Facilitate national and international collaborations that improve the volume, quality, relevance and impact of trials and intervention studies in Ireland

Focus 3: Support research, information and evidence that meet the needs of the Irish health and social care system
Objective 3.1: Support research that addresses questions of national relevance for clinical and population health practice and for health services management, and its corresponding translation into policy and/or practice
Objective 3.2: Provide high-quality, timely and relevant data for policy, service planning and research through the HRB’s national health information systems
Objective 3.3: Promote and support evidence synthesis and knowledge translation activities, in order to assist policy-makers, service planners and providers in making evidence-based decisions

Focus 4: Support exceptional researchers, talent and leadership

Objective 4.1: Attract the best people into health research by supporting excellent PhD training programmes
Objective 4.2: Provide opportunities for career development for postdoctoral researchers and emerging investigators
Objective 4.3: Work with HEIs, hospital groups and the HSE to identify, develop and support leaders in health research
Objective 4.4: Work with national and international partners to identify training opportunities and skills gaps

Focus 5: Build a strong enabling environment for health research in Ireland
Objective B.1: Provide strategic leadership to shape the national research agenda in relation to health and social care
Objective B.2: Contribute to, and benefit from, international developments in policy, regulation and legislation relevant to health research and healthcare in Ireland
Objective B.3: Invest in research infrastructure to promote excellence, critical mass and coordination, in order to support HRB strategic focuses and the wider health community
Objective B.4: Support Irish health researchers to participate in Horizon 2020 and other European research programmes

HRB-funded research, data from its Health Information Systems and evidence reviews directly support the Research and Data Plan and Outcomes Framework of Healthy Ireland and HRB generated reviews and evidence is contributing to a number of national strategies in health

Investigation

The HRB does not conduct investigations of allegations of misconduct by researchers that it funds, but expects its host institutions to have in place appropriate guidelines and processes to do undertake investigations. This expectation forms part of the HRBs Terms and Conditions of funding.

Training

The HRB does not deliver ethics and research integrity training to the researchers that it funds, but expects its Host Institutions to have in place appropriate training at post-graduate level (as part of PhD programmes). This expectation forms part of the HRBs Terms and Conditions of funding.

In addition, through its active participation in the National Research Integrity Forum, an umbrella body for both RFOs and RPOs in Ireland, the HRB actively advocating for harmonized ethics and research integrity training in Ireland for researchers at all levels of the career path.

Promoting Research Integrity

The HRB has been actively involved in the promotion of research integrity through its own policies and guidelines, and was the first Irish funding agency to publish such policies and guidelines, and to articulate its expectations in this regard in its Terms and Conditions for funding.

The HRB has been represented in both the ESF and Science Europe Working Groups and Research integrity, has participated in ENRIO for a number of years, and has played a leadership role in Ireland in the promotion of research integrity through its involvement in drafting the National Policy on Research Integrity, co-funding national seminars, chairing the Funders Subgroup of the National RI Forum and ensuring that it was specifically names in the relevant action in the National Innovation Strategy up to 2020.

Other tasks: Funding of health research

Funding of health research in a range of host institutions across Ireland, including universities, Institutes of Technology, Hospitals, health-relevant government agencies. Collection and analysis of health-related statistics to inform planning in the health system, and to inform government policy.

Contact

Dr. Maura Hiney

Head of Post-Award and Evaluation

Health Research Board
Grattan House
67-72 Lower Mount Street
Dublin D02 H636 - Ireland

+353 1 2345167

Royal Irish Academy (RIA)

Founding year

1785

History

The Royal Irish Academy (RIA) is Ireland’s premier learned body. It was founded in 1785, with the Earl of Charlemont as first president. Its royal charter, granted the following year, declared its aims to be the promotion and investigation of the sciences, polite literature, and antiquities, as well as the encouragement of discussion and debate between scholars of diverse backgrounds and interests. The early academy was concerned to provide an opportunity for the development of antiquarian studies and was the first Irish society to successfully balance the requirements of the sciences and the humanities. From the outset, the academy’s council was composed of eleven members representing the scientific disciplines and ten representing the humanities, led by a president. The presidency rotates between a representative of the sciences and of the humanities on a three-yearly basis.At the annual general meeting, members elect the president, officers and members of the council who oversee the academy’s business. An all-Ireland body, the academy organises conferences, arranges discourses and public lectures, and conducts research, with the assistance of a staffing complement of c. 80. In addition to the approximately 400 members there are also more than 60 distinguished honorary members, who in the past have included Edmund Burke, Charles Darwin, Enrico Fermi, Max Planck, Maria Edgeworth, Theodor Mommsen, Albert Einstein and Max Born.

ENRIO member since

2009

Structure

An independent all-island institution, governed by a Royal Charter granted in 1785. It is run by a Council of its Members, which is headed by a President who is elected for a three year term. Membership of the Academy is by election only and is considered the highest academic honour in Ireland.

Main Tasks

The Royal Irish Academy is a member of the National Research Integrity Forum. The Forum was established in late 2015 on foot of the publication of a National Policy for Ensuring Integrity in Irish Research. The National Research Integrity Forum does not have a statutory function, but is rather an advisory and harmonising body.

The Royal Irish Academy has been engaged with research integrity and ethics for a number of years. It hosted the Irish Council for Bioethics up to 2009, and is also a member of ENRIO and has a nominee on the ALLEA Permanent Working Group on Science and Ethics, which has been involved in a revision of the European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity.

As part of the national drive to harmonise the management of research integrity in the university section, the Academy has agreed to develop a panel of independent experts (international) who could participate in university investigation committees.

Promoting Research Integrity

The Royal Irish Academy has been actively involved in the promotion of research integrity for several years. It is a member of Ireland’s National Forum for Research Integrity and was closely engaged in the drafting of the National Policy on Research Integrity. In the years preceding the adoption of the National Policy, the Academy worked closely with the academic and research community and research funders to build awareness of research integrity issues, organising and hosting several public seminars and workshops enabling public discussion and sharing of national and international best practice. Through its membership of the ALLEA Permanent Working Group on Science and Ethics, the Academy has contributed significantly to the development of the revised 2017 European Code of Conduct for researchers.

Contact

Sinéad Riordan

Head of Policy and International Relations
+353 1 6090640