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Research Design Service

Service Availability

Using the Service

Please download the contact form and return to Please fill it in as completely as you can.

If you need further assistance you can contact us by phone on 0191 334 0826 or 0191 208 7567.

Your enquiry will be discussed by our team and assigned to one or more of our first contact advisors. We will arrange a time for you to meet us.

Be aware that most researchers take at least three months to develop an adequate proposal with a reasonable chance of funding success. Funding bodies provide closing dates for applications on their websites. Seldom can a decent proposal be generated in the space of a few weeks and we will advise waiting until a future deadline rather than rushing your proposal. For example, for applicants to the Research for Public Benefit (RfPB) funding stream it helps realistically if enquiries begin three months before the submission deadline, which occurs three times a year.

Here are few generic issues that may be useful for you to consider before you visit the RDS, although we can provide further advice.

  • Have you completed background work in the form of a review which clearly demonstrates the need for the research you want to undertake?
  • How important are the potential findings of your research to the funding body, and NHS?
  • Have you discussed your research ideas with the users of your research (for example, patients or doctors)? NIHR funding streams look for patient and public involvement.
  • What skills and experience do you need to demonstrate within your research team to make your proposed research look credible to a funding body?