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The Centre for Implementation Science is home to a team of expert implementation and improvement science researchers, including health economists and statisticians. This team is investigating how best to help ‘implement’ evidence-based practice and clinical research within health services in south London, nationally and internationally.

As part of this work, the team studies the role of healthcare professionals, managers, commissioners of health services and policymakers as well as organisational structures and processes to try to understand why health services don’t always offer the safest, most effective treatments and ways of working. They also study which circumstances make it easier for research results to be adopted.

The Centre for Implementation Science (CIS) was established in 2014 and became operational in 2015. It is led by Professor Claire Henderson. Dr Louise Hull is Deputy Director of CIS. CIS also aims to develop the discipline of implementation science and its researchers support the capacity building work of NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) South London.

Within the Centre, there are five research themes:

Global health research

The Centre’s scientists have a very active portfolio of studies in low and middle income countries, investigating implementation, uptake and sustainability of numerous evidenced mental and physical healthcare service delivery and improvement interventions. The theme is led by Professor Sir Graham Thornicroft. Dr Nadine Seward is deputy theme lead.

Methodology research

Jointly with King’s Health Economics and the Department of Biostatistics and Health Informatics, the Centre’s scientists are developing novel methodologies for the conduct of implementation research in health and social care settings – with a primary focus on hybrid effectiveness-implementations methods and associated assessment instruments. The theme is led by Dr Louise Hull. Dr Ioannis Bakolis is deputy theme lead.

Public mental health research

The Centre’s scientists lead the evaluation of public mental health programmes, working with the Mental Health Policy Research Unit, and have a portfolio of studies in mental health services research. The theme is led by Professor Claire Henderson.

Improvement research

The Centre views improvement science as complementary to implementation science – and has an active portfolio of funded studies to advance our understanding of healthcare improvement processes in South London, within the wider UK, NHS and globally. The theme is led by Dr Kia-Chong Chua.

Equity and participatory research

Theme lead Dr Josephine Ocloo: Equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) and coproduced participatory research is central to achieving high-quality applied health and social care research that leads to improved health and social care outcomes for different population groups and communities. These approaches ensure that research is relevant and supports implementation into practice. EDI and participatory research is progressed in CIS through the work of ARC South London (see Methodology theme). The EDI work in the ARC applies an intersectional approach – which recognises combinations of advantage and disadvantage across a range of characteristics, including age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation – to ensure a diverse and inclusive research environment.