Research Associate / Research Assistant – Mental health research work with KINGS COLLEGE LONDON

job description

An experienced and highly motivated research associate is required for the NIHR Collaborative Applied Research (ARC) National Priorities program in mental health, including children and youth. The objective of the program is to catalyze and evaluate the co-produced implementation of high impact, evidence-based mental health interventions, at key stages of the life course, at a supraregional or national level within 3 years. .

The Mental Health Implementation Network is led by the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC) South London, working closely with the NIHR ARC East of England as well as the 13 other ARCs nationwide.

MHIN launched a scoping exercise in April 2021 to identify specific areas of mental health care in England where there is a high level of unmet need, and which could be addressed by existing solutions based on large-scale evidence. . There has been an excellent response to the scoping exercise, with mental health trusts, charities, social and educational services and research organizations helping to identify over 90 mental health needs in England.

MHIN researchers then aligned these needs with those identified by other studies in England since 2015 and a review of national policy documents. Using this approach, researchers identified seven broad areas of mental health needs and accompanying solutions in England: children and young people; addiction and mental illness; Inequality ; integrated physical and mental health care. Working across all four areas, the team identified 22 mental health solutions that meet the needs of patients and health systems, can be ready for implementation, and are supported by evidence of effectiveness, including guidance. from Nice.

The next step will be to prioritize key interventions in each of the four thematic areas, followed by implementation and evaluation. This position is based in the Solutions Development Team (workstream 3) and is led by Professor Peter Littlejohns (King’s College London) and Program Director Dr Shalini Ahuja (King’s College London) and will study prioritization, design and dissemination of mental health interventions across England.

Under the direction of MHIN Workflow Managers, the incumbent will work collaboratively with MHIN project groups, workflows, and other stakeholders to plan and conduct high-quality applied research aimed at improving performance. mental health services.

This position will be offered on a 12-month fixed-term contract (can be extended until the end of September 2023)

This is a full time position – 100% full time equivalent

Main responsibilities

  • Work effectively with MHIN consortium members and other collaborators to carry out research and evaluation activities and results.
  • Conduct systematic and scoping reviews and collect and analyze qualitative and / or quantitative data, using mixed-method approaches
  • Use participatory approaches to work with MHIN staff, project groups, partner organizations, collaborators and communities to co-produce research and to participate in research as part of interventions.
  • Disseminate project results by writing articles for publication in peer-reviewed journals and blogs for the MHIN website and by presenting research at local, national and international meetings
  • Contribute to data management for research studies.
  • Contribute to and attend appropriate meetings and events as required

The incumbent will:

  • Contribute to proposals for high quality research activities.
  • Contribute to research reports and publications based on the work of the program.
  • Contribute to the educational activity offered by their department, the IoPPN and public commitments.
  • Undertake and successfully complete the mandatory training required by the School appropriate to the role.
  • Serve in the Center for Implementation Science as directed by the Head of Department and required by standard College procedures.

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the incumbent will be required to undertake the tasks and responsibilities reasonably expected in the context and classification of the position.

Skills, knowledge and experience

Essential criteria

A post-graduate degree in mental health research (e.g. health services research, implementation science, anthropology, social psychology or epidemiology, statistics in a field related to mental health). Undergraduate research experience in the field of mental health preferably in one of the following areas;

  • child and adolescent mental health

  • Dependencies,

  • inequalities in mental health care,

  • integrated mental and physical health care.

  • Proven expertise and experience in qualitative data collection and analysis and in literature reviews. Please provide evidence of the breadth of experience and level of expertise, as well as details of specific analytical methods

  • In-depth knowledge of mental health issues

  • Evidence of excellent academic writing preferably published in peer-reviewed journals as expected by the field / discipline in terms of types and volume of results

  • Proven ability to work independently, collaborate effectively within a multidisciplinary and culturally diverse team, and proven ability to meet research deadlines.

  • Evidence of excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing to different audiences, including evidence of the ability to produce clear, non-technical writing (e.g. for non-academic audiences

  • Evidence of good organizational skills, including effective time management.

  • Proof of excellent attention to detail.

  • Experience working with stakeholders in different organizational structures including patients, service users and caregivers.

  • General flexibility in working hours, with a willingness to travel on project business if necessary.

  • Good quality doctorate in behavioral or social sciences, mental health or in a discipline with an orientation related to mental health

  • Postdoctoral training in applied health research methods, excellent data collection and analysis skills, and experience in leading and communicating mixed-method research or evaluation projects

  • Experience in conducting evidence syntheses (eg systematic reviews, meta-analyzes) and evidence assessment.

Desirable criteria

  1. Experience in data management and protection
  2. Experience leading or contributing to a high impact publication
  3. Experience in conducting multi-criteria decision analysis


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