RCPCH Trainee Research Network

We're establishing this network to support trainees to undertake research. The network will facilitate collaborative working and support across existing trainee research networks, both regionally and nationally.


In 2018 we at RCPCH published the report, Turning the Tide: five years on, which highlighted some of the many positive developments in UK basic science and clinical research. However, we also identified some worrying trends, such as the decrease in academic paediatricians at senior lecturer grade, and the limited amount of time (often zero) that paediatricians of all grades have for research in their job plans, the inadequate representation of children’s interests in the UK life sciences industries strategy and few paediatricians on national research boards and committees.

Following the report's publication, we committed to a continued focus on developing child health research and supporting paediatricians at every career stage to build capability and capacity to carry out research. 

Aims of this network

  • Increase the visibility of existing trainee research networks 
  • Help the development of new trainee paediatric research networks in areas where they do not currently exist
  • Increase the opportunities for trainees to carry out research
  • Provide trainees with peer support and guidance to develop their own research ideas
  • Allow trainees to be a driving force behind recent strides in collaborative research 
  • Initiate and support research projects which paediatric trainees are able to participate in
  • Support trainees to develop research skills (eg statistics, ethical approval, writing research reports for publication, administrative support) and confidence in research 
  • Allow trainees in regions to come together to address local clinical questions as well as contributing towards large-scale NIHR (National Institute for Health Research) portfolio studies
  • Allow conception and conduction of pan-UK projects 


Applications open for the Sir Peter Tizard Research Bursary 2020-21The successful applicant will receive a free slot on the BPSU’s rare disease surveillance scheme worth £15,000 and a £1,000 stipend towards training needs. The bursary is open to paediatric trainees and newly qualified consultants wishing to undertake an epidemiological research study into a rare disease or condition that affects children and which addresses a question of clinical or public health importance. The closing date for applications is 16 October 2020.

RCPCH/NIHR Academic Trainees Day - Interested in paediatric research and want guidance on getting involved? Or do you already work in research and you want to meet like-minded individuals? Held each year, this event allows trainees to hear from, and network with, those working in child health research. On 21 October 2020, the RCPCH supported by NIHR are hosting a free Academic Trainees Day. You will hear from high-profile speakers and network with others with similar interests. This year's event will be held online.

Bill Marshall Fellowship - This £5,000 bursary is intended for junior doctors in training for whom a period of research would be an appropriate next step in their career who wish to visit Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust and the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health to gain further experience at one of the specialist departments. The closing date for applications is 31 October 2020.

GOSH/UCL Institute of Child Health funded PhD studentship - The aim is to examine the extent to which different models of mental health provision affect outcomes for children with chronic illnesses such as epilepsy. The closing date for applications is 27 November 2020 and you can read the application process.


Academic toolkit - This resource includes funding application checklists, tips on writing your PhD application and case studies from those already in research.

Research funding opportunities - We support and promote paediatric child health research in the UK and internationally. Search our database of current and upcoming opportunities for projects and posts.


We support other trainee research networks across the UK, including: 

Network members

Task & Finish Group Co-Chairs

  • Dr Eva Wooding
  • Dr Hannah Vawda
  • Dr Helen McDermott
  • Dr Christopher Course

Task & Finish Group Members

  • Dr Thiloka Ratnaike - East of England
  • Dr Rebecca Unsworth - London
  • Dr Susan Wallace - London
  • Dr Julianne Sanner - Midlands
  • Dr Sunil Bhopal - North East and Yorkshire
  • Dr Aisling Flinn - North East and Yorkshire
  • Dr Aimee Donald - North West
  • Dr Frances Callaghan - North West
  • Dr Christopher Worth - North West
  • Dr Romanie Hannah - South East
  • Dr Maya Kohli-Lynch - South West
  • Dr Olivia Swann - Scotland
  • Dr Fiona McQuaid - Scotland


If you have any queries about this network, contact the Research & Evidence Team at research@rcpch.ac.uk or by phone at 0207 092 6080.