New Seed Fund to Support Co-production in Medical Research

This is an open invitation by Imperial College London to anyone who is interested in thinking afresh about who gets the chance to be involved in research, what research questions get asked, how research is done and who benefits from it.

By Kelly Gleason, Imperial CRUK Lead Nurse, Department of Surgery & Cancer, Imperial College London

Imperial College’s Public Engagement team wants to open up the conversation as widely as possible so it’s asking the local community to get involved and work in a different way around research.

It’s seed funds support a broad range of activities that enable Imperial College researchers to engage with the public. This particular seed fund will be a bit different, in that it aims to support researchers and community members to form partnerships and deliver research activities together.

Our plan is to pilot this new approach over the next year, bringing you with us as we learn on this journey.

Here are some of the questions we’re thinking about:

  • How can we make it easier for diverse groups of people to plan and deliver research together?
  • How can a dedicated funding stream support this?
  • What shared principles and values need to inform this work?
  • What support mechanisms and processes would encourage you to really get involved?
  • How can we develop shared and inclusive language to enable working together?
  • How do we grow a community around this work and give them a real say in how it develops?

We don’t know the answers yet, but we do know that we need to work with all of you, and the diversity of your experience, to explore them.

How can you get involved?

There will be a range of options, depending how much time you can spare and what your interests are.

  1. Would you like to be part of our Co-Production Team over June and July? We are looking for a small group of people, representing both our academic and non-academic communities, to join us in co-producing how the new funding stream will work. In terms of time commitment, we anticipate about two days of your time in total, kicking off with a 1 day in-person workshop on the 6th of June at The Invention Rooms on the White City Campus followed by a half day in person workshop on the 19th of June at the White City Community Centre. If you are registering your interest as a community partner and are invited to the workshops, please be reassured that this is a paid opportunity, and you will be remunerated for your time.
  2. You can also join our Co-production Conversation where we will keep you posted with opportunities to hear what emerges from the Co-Production Team and contribute your ideas along the way.

If you’re interested, please email Tom Morton at and let him know a little bit about you and why you are interested. If you’d prefer a quick chat, Tom will find a good time to speak with you and answer any questions you have. Tom is happy to chat to anyone about what would enable them to get involved.

Please note that, for practical reasons, we will only be able to facilitate a small group of people in the workshop and we want to ensure that as broad a range of researchers and community partners as possible are represented. It may be that we can’t host everyone who expresses interest but, if that’s the case, we will give you other opportunities to contribute and input your ideas as the work develops.

Those chosen to be involved in the workshops will be compensated for their time at £25.00/hour. 

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Renu Kaul

May 14, 2024

I am Chair of Chair of a local residents association and would like to join the research team to contribute my experiences and knowledge of the diverse community around me.


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