Why is research and innovation important?

Research and innovation mean different things to different people.

Research is about finding new knowledge that could lead to changes in treatments, policies, services, or care. Innovation includes invention of products or services, where new ideas are developed to solve problems, improve outcomes, save lives, and the best ones spread quickly for wider benefit.

The National Institute of Health and Care Research (NIHR) is tasked by the Department of Health and social care to fund research. Please click here to learn more: National Institute for Health and Care Research | NIHR.

The NIHR says that research can:

  • Find new and better ways of preventing, diagnosing and treating diseases or conditions
  • Test new approaches that could improve the lives of people receiving health or social care
  • Look at the costs and benefits of making changes in the community, for example, introducing exercise programmes or screening for cancer in certain age groups
  • Help us understand how the NHS and social care services can run more efficiently

Research is one way that we can provide the evidence to improve treatments and care so that the people of Lincolnshire can have the best possible start in life, and be supported to live, age and die well. The Research and Innovation Hub is part of LIfE Lincolnshire Improvement for Everyone which strives to make continual improvements to the services received by the people that live and work in Lincolnshire.

Taking part in a project may not always directly help you, but you will be helping to improve treatments and services in the future. Research and Innovation takes place in many settings, for example GP practices, hospitals, your village hall, or your home, and spans across our life course, from birth to end of life.

Research has its own terminology or jargon. For more information, please visit Glossary | NIHR.

Please click on the options below to find out why research and innovation important to us.

  • Communities

    Research can give us a better understanding of our local population so that we can work together to maintain health and wellbeing and reduce inequalities.

    Research and innovation gives our communities the opportunity to try new treatments or approaches before they are readily available.

  • Staff

    Research offers staff opportunities to develop so they less likely to leave. It can also attract new staff into the county.

  • Finance

    Research and innovation are funded and therefore can bring extra money into our organisations.

  • Services

    Research and innovation can help to provide the evidence for change to help us to deliver improved outcomes and experiences.

    Policy maker and commissioners need evidence to support their decision making around delivering and transforming services.

    Organisations that undertake research have better patient outcomes, reduced death rates and better staff satisfaction.

  • Our county
    Our county

    Research and Innovation will help make Lincolnshire a better place to live and work by helping us to achieve our collective goals through continuous improvement. By increasing our involvement in research and innovation we will ensure that we understand what is needed in our county, which means we can influence local, regional and national policies so they are relevant to our communities.

Get involved

It is essential that members of the public are given the opportunity to be involved in research at all stages. Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement or PPIE, is an active partnership between patients and the public and researchers in the research process.

Find out more on the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) website: Patients, carers and the public | NIHR.

You can be involved in:

  1. Identifying what research is important to you and your communities
  2. Helping to design the study
  3. Volunteering to take part or undertaking interviews with people taking part in the research
  4. Helping to share the findings
  5. Helping to shape the changes in the services that you receive

When using the term ‘public’ we include patients, potential patients, carers and people who use health and social care services as well as people from organisations that represent people who use services.

If you’d like to learn more about what’s involved in research or hear from the volunteers who have taken part, please explore our ‘People’s stories’ page.

You can also access this free National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), three-week online course: What is Health Research? Anyone can register and you can complete the course at your own pace.