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Meet the research involvement team

Welcome to the new research involvement web pages!

Towards the end of last year, we embarked on a project to develop new webpages dedicated to research involvement activities. A workshop followed in November with a number of our patient insight partners , and the pages you see today are a result of what people with arthritis have told us they want to see. But before we begin, let us introduce ourselves…

Who are we…

The research involvement teamIn another life, Chris (research involvement manager) was a basic researcher – based at one of our centres of excellence as a matter of fact! He’s seen life on the other side and has seen the transformation that the organisation has undergone in its commitment to people with arthritis.

Charlotte (research involvement officer) used to edit academic law books and scientific manuscripts/posters/slide decks (in multiple sclerosis, vaccinations, diabetic retinopathy and rheumatology), and has much personal experience of advocating for the involvement of people with long-term health conditions in research.

What we do…

  • We recruit people with arthritis to form a group of incredibly engaged volunteers; our patient insight partners (PIPs)
  • We support this group to ensure that their insights have maximum impact, whether that’s as members of our research subcommittees alongside researchers, in their reviewing and evaluating of research projects, or as part of recommending panels for projects such as Spark
  • We work with our colleagues to ensure that patient insight is integrated into all of our research activities – from setting research priorities to training researchers in patient and public involvement (PPI)
  • We work with the other UK and international research funders from across sectors to promote and progress patient involvement 

and much, much more!

Why we do it…

There is an old patient involvement saying, ‘Nothing about me; without me’. It epitomises our approach to involvement, whereby none of our decisions or activities should be made without the insight of people with arthritis. This perspective ensures that we’re focused on the unmet needs of people with arthritis. So when this is combined with the technical expertise of researchers, we can be sure we’re funding the most relevant, most appropriate research.

In line with the shift of our strategic focus and the increased involvement of people with arthritis in our research activities over the last five years, the research involvement team itself has also grown considerably – from 30% of one person’s role, to our two-person full-time team! This commitment to involvement really embodies the charity’s strategy to put people with arthritis at the heart of everything we do.  

That’s all for now. If you’d like to know more, feel free to drop us an email at

We're now

Versus Arthritis.

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Arthritis Research UK fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis. You can support Arthritis Research UK by volunteering, donating or visiting our shops.