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Research Leader: Healthcare Innovation

RAND Europe - Health and Wellbeing Research Group

RAND Europe is a world renown not-for-profit policy research organisation. We conduct independent and objective research and analysis for public sector, industry and not for profit clients and provide evidence-based insights that influence policy decisions in the UK, Europe and globally. Our work lies on the continuum between that of universities and consultancies, combining the academic rigour of universities and the professional, task orientated approach of consultancies.

Following a period of rapid growth, we are further expanding our portfolio in the field of healthcare innovation and are looking to recruit a motivated Research Leader to join our team. This role would suit an experienced, creative and collaborative researcher who is committed to improving policy and decision-making in the service of population health. We are looking for an individual(s) who enjoys conducting high quality research and analysis on diverse healthcare innovation related challenges of our time. For example, we work on better understanding the societal burden of various diseases and on improving patient care through innovation (including in areas like cancer, cardiovascular disease, rare diseases, infectious diseases like COVID-19 and others), tackling antimicrobial resistance and research on vaccine nationalism. We do research to inform actions that policymakers, regulators and payers can take to improve patient access to life-saving innovations, and research that seeks to better understand how innovation in the life sciences will be financed and supported in the future. And that is just a taster of the types of topics we engage with. You can find out more about our recent projects here:

We welcome applications from diverse disciplinary and professional backgrounds. For example, you might come from a healthcare research related department in a university, a science, technology and innovation research group, or from a consultancy, research institute or think-thank. Or you might have worked in a research-related role in a government policy department that focuses on healthcare, innovation and/or the life sciences. Our Research Leaders typically have a PhD degree or at minimum a postgraduate degree with additional relevant working experience. Regardless of your education level, you are expected to have significant prior work experience. We are particularly interested in hearing from applicants with strong qualitative research skills and welcome applicants with quantitative and mixed-methods skills as well.

Our Research Leaders are also strong communicators and are known by influential organisations in the healthcare and/or innovation space-  for example in research ,policy, industry and/or not for profit sector communities. 

As Research Leader at RAND Europe you will build your own research portfolio and be supported by colleagues in doing so.  You will help grow RAND Europe’s reputation as a contributor to internationally and nationally significant policy debates, and develop our external audiences.  You will promote mixed-methods and interdisciplinary research in keeping with our mission to improve policy-making for the public good.  As a visionary researcher, with a talent for managing research teams, you will generate ideas, nurture talent and enthuse internal and external partners to support your research.

Our Research Leaders are visible ambassadors for RAND Europe, raising its profile with relevant audiences whenever possible.  You will also: 

  • Role model the behaviours RAND Europe seeks in employees which ensure a collegial atmosphere which supports our values; you can view our values charter at:
  • Develop and maintain a network of contacts with relevant individuals and organizations in the public policy area.
  • Inspire and engage in collaboration; establish productive relationships across RAND and externally.

The successful applicant will work in our Cambridge (UK) office and be part of our wider Health and Wellbeing research group of over twenty talented, collaborative and flexible individuals. The Health and Wellbeing group conducts a broad portfolio of policy research in healthcare innovation, healthcare services research, well-being and public health for a diverse client base in the UK, Europe and beyond. The successful applicant is being recruited to work predominantly on the healthcare innovation stream of the team’s portfolio for both industry and public sector clients. This entails bringing multidisciplinary research, evaluation, analysis, expertise and innovative methods to help our clients navigate major innovation-related challenges that will shape the future of healthcare. The Health and Wellbeing team are a friendly and very collaborative group of researchers. We thrive on exchanging ideas with each other and pushing the boundaries of our knowledge. We also sometime collaborate with other organisations such as universities and consultancies.

If this sounds like an environment that you would enjoy and like to contribute to, we would love to hear from you!

The role of the research leader will be to contribute on diverse fronts of our healthcare innovation portfolio:

Research and Team Management

Within RAND Europe, your responsibilities for research and team management include: 

  • Developing and leading research projects. You will be interested in working on healthcare research and policy focused projects commissioned by industry, public sector and not for profit clients. RAND Europe believes that impact on society strongly depends on connecting the dots between different stakeholders in both the public and private sectors and that siloed approaches to tackling policy challenges do not lead to optimal impacts. In addition to our established portfolio for public and third sector clients, we have been growing our portfolio of work supported by industry clients, when such work is in line with our mission and independence. You can see the diversity of our healthcare innovation work and clients here:  Some experience of working with clients across different sectors (public, industry) is desirable.
  • Accepting full responsibility for the quality of research outputs, maintaining existing high standards
  • Working as part of a team, leading, inspiring, motivating and developing staff in line with our values and competences.
  • Providing supportive management to project and proposal teams that you lead.
  • Generating imaginative research projects and partnerships across a broad range of relevant healthcare innovation issues.
  • Building and maintaining effective relationships with other internal teams and external organizations.
  • Providing effective project management experience, including experience of budget management.
  • Demonstrating strong research method skills in two or more of the following areas: qualitative methodological skills covering two or more of the following areas: literature review (e.g. rapid evidence assessment or systematic review), stakeholder engagement (e.g. structured and semi-structured interviews, focus groups, workshops, gaming, surveys), futures methods (e.g. scenarios, gaming), design and implementation of monitoring and evaluation frameworks, quantitative dataset analysis, quantitative survey design and analysis, statistics, modelling, economics. We are particularly interested in hearing from applicants with experience in qualitative methods but also very much welcome applicants with mixed qualitative and quantitative methods experience. 

Business development 

As a leader of a research portfolio, you will be responsible for generating funding through proposals and business development: 

  • Working with the lead of the overall healthcare innovation portfolio and other senior researchers to help evolve and implement the business development strategy in our healthcare innovation area of work
  • Adopting an entrepreneurial approach to securing new sources of research funding. Annual target of £250K - £300K.
  • Leading the preparation of funding applications, designing the research approach and commercial offer in collaboration with others in the organisation
  • Helping nurture existing networks and building new networks relevant to the healthcare innovation portfolio. 


In addition to conducting world-class research you will be expected to: 

  • Identify and pursue opportunities for communication and dissemination of project findings, through publications, seminars, workshops, and the full range of on-line resources.
  • Further communicate your research and gain visibility for RAND Europe through our website, social media and other media channels.
  • Work closely with the Communications team to deliver these goals.
  • Raise our profile through your networks with industry, policy-makers, research organisations and government funders, partners and potentially the media, where applicable.

Person Specification

Essential Qualifications, Experience and Knowledge: 

  • Extensive experience and a strong track record within your field of research with consistent performance in successfully delivering substantial research projects of relevance to healthcare and/or innovation policy.
  • Demonstrable experience of being able to successfully develop, manage and motivate teams and get the best from colleagues.
  • A strong network in relevant topic areas
  • A track record of successfully securing research funding.
  • Deep experience of engaging with key stakeholders such as industry and/or governmental departments and/or international institutions and or not-for-profits/charities.
  • Masters in relevant subject area.  A PhD would be advantageous but not essential if you have substantial relevant working experience.
  • RAND Europe’s working language is English.  Fluency in another language would be an advantage but is not essential.

In your application you must state your eligibility to work in the UK.  Please note, we are able to offer visa sponsorship for this role.

We are open to flexible working and the post holder is expected to be in the office on regular occasions but we also support a degree of remote working.

Benefits package

  • 8% Employer contribution pension
  • BUPA medical insurance
  • Income protection
  • Group life assurance
  • Employee Assistance scheme
  • Enhanced holiday allowance
  • Enhanced maternity and paternity pay
  • Free parking
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Company bikes
  • Employee wellbeing initiatives
  • RAND Europe has an extensive skills and development programme that will build your capabilities and equip you for the range of challenging and exciting tasks that we will ask you to work on. You will also have dedicated support for your personal development.

How to apply

If you have the qualities to further strengthen our team, please submit an application via RAND Europe’s online careers portal. You will need to submit a CV, covering letter and a short writing sample (up to 3 pages, aimed at a non-technical audience).  Please ensure that your CV, covering letter and writing sample are submitted together as one single document. 

Closing date for this position is Monday 4th October 2021.

Location: Cambridge
Salary: Competitive
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Permanent
Placed On: 7th September 2021
Closes: 4th October 2021
Job Ref: 2021-1222
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