NIHR NENC ARC at the University of Cumbria


In 2019 the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) awarded funding for a Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) in the North East and North Cumbria (NENC). ARCs aim to tackle key issues facing health and social care systems and which cause health and care inequality.  The funding allows researchers to focus on the biggest health and social issues locally and to develop solutions that reflect the needs and views of local people. The ARC’s vision for the North East and North Cumbria is to achieve ‘better, fairer health and care at all ages and in all places.’ As part of the NENC ARC, the Centre for Research in Health and Society at the University of Cumbria received funding to research health and social inequalities in North Cumbria.


The Centre for Research in Health and Society is undertaking a range of projects with the NIHR NENC ARC funding. All our efforts are focussed on collaborations with practitioners, organisations and other researchers across NENC in order to develop better fairer care for everyone. In order to achieve this we have a funded senior research fellow, two full time PhD projects and a number of applied research projects.


Senior Research Fellow in Social and Health Inequalities, Dr Elaine Bidmead.

Elaine is conducting a scoping review in the first year of her appointment (April 2020-2021) to inform our understanding of these inequities in North Cumbria. Following this review Elaine will develop further research and innovation into areas that were highlighted as prime concerns in the scoping review. To get involved please contact Elaine at:

Full Time Funded PhD Opportunities

We have two full time PhD's starting in October 2020. One will be investigating trauma informed practices with children and young people and the other will explore non-representational theory in evaluation methodology. We are currently open to applications, the details of which can be found here: 


Exploring trauma informed practice in services that support children and families in North Cumbria.


Evaluating change “as it happens”: Using non-representational theory to inform evaluation methods in NENC.


Applied Research Grants

We are currently awaiting funding news on a range of eight applied research projects across NENC and hope to post more details in the weeks to come. If you have an idea for an applied project that would improve outcomes for people then please contact us so we can develop an application with you for the next round of funding in May 2021.

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