Category Archives: Uncategorized

First full ResIn article on cancer research investments

We are pleased to announce the first ResIn publication covering UK cancer research investments. It is published in BMJ Open, and the full open-access publication can be found by clicking here.

We assessed thousands of research projects covering all types of cancer, and identify areas of research strength in the UK and areas where the portfolio is relatively weak. Breast and prostate cancers, for example, received relatively high investment compared to burden of disease whilst there was little funding for cancer of the liver, thyroid, lung, upper GI tract and bladder, despite high burdens of disease. Around two-thirds of the investment is for pre-clinical science.

 

New ResIn publication – R&D funding for Ebola

As part of the Research Investments in Global Health study (ResIn, www.researchinvestments.org), you may be interested in this our recent paper, led by colleague Joseph Fitchett and with Rifat Atun as senior author – we described funding for ebola R&D in the years prior to the 2014 outbreak and the responsive funding during the first year of the outbreak, covering $1 billion of investments from US and UK government, Wellcome, Gates etc. We’ve charted the funder, destination of those funds, and what they’re for (e.g. vaccine, diagnostics, therapeutics).

Now published ‘online first’ at Journal of Global Health

Paper is here – http://www.jogh.org/documents/issue201602/jogh-06-020703.XML

PDF is here – http://www.jogh.org/documents/issue201602/jogh-06-020703.pdf

ResIn meetings report published in BMC Proceedings

We are pleased to announce the publication of our meetings report in the open-access BMC Proceedings. This report covers three workshops held at the Wellcome Trust (London), UK Research Offices (Brussels) and the World Health Organisation (Geneva), set up to discuss the methods and results to date of the Research Investments in Global Health (ResIn) study, and to consider best ways forward for the project. Over 50 individuals attended from some of the world’s leading funders, policymakers, academic institutions and professional groups.

See the BMC Proceedings website for the report.

Suggested citation –
Head MG, Brown RJ. The activity of the Research Investments in Global Health study and ways forward within the global funding and policy landscape. BMC Proceedings. 2016. 10(Suppl 8):59. doi: 10.1186/s12919-016-0065-2

 

 

Assessing funding for AMR research in South Korea

The Research Investments in Global Health (ResIn) study were delighted to collaborate with public health researchers in South Korea (Republic of Korea) on an analysis of R&D funding related to antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

Our original article has been published in the Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance. We assessed 198 project reports that had a total funding of US$18.3 million. Much of the funding (61.5%) was for implementation and operational research, and universities were the lead institutions for 73.2% of the awards. There was little funding for projects that had a focus on global health, and few projects had a focus on specific pathogens.

Suggested citation –  Ryu SH, Head MG, Kim BI, Hwang JC, Cho EH. Are we investing wisely? A systematic analysis of nationally funded antimicrobial resistance projects in Korea, 2003-2013. Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance. 2016. doi:10.1016/j.jgar.2016.03.007

 

ResIn is offering bursaries for two summer students in 2016!

The Research Investments in Global Health study (ResIn) is delighted to have won a small grant from the Royal Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene! This will allow us to host two students this summer on paid bursaries at the University of Southampton, to pilot methods that combine research investment analyses with geospatial techniques. These placements would suit medical, MSc/Bsc, nursing students etc (all scientific disciplines considered, recent graduates or more experienced colleagues between posts will also be considered). For the geospatial activity, experience in GIS, geography and/or associated disciplines will be required.

More information…

We have available two (non-laboratory) research placements at the university this summer, one based at Southampton General Hospital in the Faculty of Medicine, and one (most likely) located at the university Highfield campus. The bursaries will each be £1600 for 10 weeks (pro-rata payment for shorter placement will be considered). Timing is flexible across July to October.

Project title – Combining research investments analyses and malaria maps in Africa – are we investing limited resources wisely? Part of the Research Investments in Global Health study, ResIn, www.researchinvestments.org

People involved – Michael Head (project lead, main supervisor), Stuart Clarke, Becky Brown (Faculty of Medicine, Southampton), Andy Tatem (Geography, Southampton), Joseph Fitchett (Harvard)

Background – The study is analysing global trends in funding for infectious disease research. We are currently collating research funding data from all the nations in the G20 and analysing the individual awards for relevance to infection, and then categorising them under diseases and disease areas, pathogens and type of science. In 12-18 months’ time we will have finalised a large global dataset of funding trends over the last 15 years and be able to identify areas of national and international research strength, areas of funding neglect, and be able to inform the R&D agenda of how to distribute limited financial resources as equitably as possible.

See http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352396415302449  for our latest paper on mapping the UK funding landscape, and http://researchinvestments.org/publications/ for the rest of our publications to give an idea of the sort of work we produce.

Placement activity of student handling the research funding data –  Here, we are going to focus on research investment data from the world’s leading global health funders. Some of this is already extracted and categorised, some of which the research funding student will need to collate and categorise (full supervision and support provided here, of course). As well as disease categories, they will need to pick out the awards with a geographical focus in sub-Saharan Africa e.g. ‘malaria vaccines trial in Kenya’. They will need to find out as precisely as possible where that research was taking place (reading study abstract, googling, institutional websites, reading published outputs related to the study etc), so it can be mapped by the geography student. There will be plenty of playing around in spreadsheets, with excel equations and manual sifting, analysis within Stata, and generating results via tables and visualisations, in order to generate some results about the extent and nature of the selected studies.

The geography/geospatial student – Having received a dataset of selected studies related to malaria that have a specified geographical focus, they will then integrate this information with existing datasets. The Malaria Atlas Project, http://www.map.ox.ac.uk/, has mapped malaria burden to every grid square in sub-Saharan Africa.  The WorldPop data is also openly available, http://www.worldpop.org.uk/. Using GIS/other methods, the student will produce some visualisations describing the location of where the research funding is targeted – what are the burdens, demographics and geography of these areas? This can help to answer questions such as – Are investments biased towards high transmission, sparsely populated rural areas, or high-density elimination settings? Are there geographic regions that have been neglected but could greatly benefit from being the focus of investment? Are we investing as equitably and ethically as possible?

Placement outputs
– written data and visuals;
– at least one peer-reviewed publication (on which both students would be authors);
– there is a small budget for conference attendance to present the results;
– also plans to host a meeting in London (probably at the Wellcome Trust) at the end of the project to highlight the study and results to influential funders and policymakers with an interest in this area, this is a good chance to build useful links, travel to and from London would be paid for.

Skills required – for the research investments student – a systematic approach to working with plenty of attention to detail, experience handling data in excel and any other stats/epidemiological software would be useful but not essential, interests in global health and infectious diseases (malaria in particular)
– for the geography/geospatial student – knowledge of GIS, experience with geospatial techniques, interests in global health and infectious diseases (malaria in particular)

If interested – send your CV and brief email of your background/interests in these areas to Michael Head at the University of Southampton, m.head@soton.ac.uk . Please state which of the two placements you are interested in. Deadline for expressions of interest – 31 May 2016.

 

 

 

ResIn contributes to WHO R&D Observatory call for evidence

We have had our latest manuscript published in the journal Health Research Policy and Systems. This paper is the first to be published as part of the World Health Organisation R&D Observatory call for evidence.

Our article compares research investment to United Kingdom institutions with published outputs for tuberculosis, HIV and malaria. We analyse these by numbers of publications and citations and by disease and type of science, in order to identify what research is most prolific in terms of published outputs in these three disease areas.

To see our findings, click here for the full-open access paper.

And click here to see more about the R&D Observatory call for evidence

Neonatal infectious disease commentary in Lancet Global Health

ResIn contributed data and investigator time to a commentary that appeared in Lancet Global Health, entitled Neonatal infection: a major burden with minimal funding. There are around 0.7 million neonatal deaths worldwide each year due to infectious diseases, but when correlating investment against disease burden for 25 infections, neonatal disease ranks lowest of all. The commentary covers more on that point, plus some pragmatic discussion around the need for capacity-strengthening and raising of awareness in this important area.

See the link above for the full commentary, also see our publications page for the rest of our published outputs.

 

Two papers published by ResIn study – pneumonia and STIs

Two papers published by Research Investments in Global Health (ResIn) study – pneumonia and STIs 

The ResIn study has published a couple of papers over the summer of 2015, covering research funding for pneumonia (published in EBioMedicine), and also sexually-transmitted infections (published in the Journal of Global Health). Both papers are open-access.

Click here for the pneumonia paper.

Click here for the STIs paper.

 

ResIn is recruiting!

The Research Investments in Global Health study is recruiting!

Research Fellow in infectious disease research investment analyses
Location:  Southampton General Hospital
Salary:   £28,695 to £35,256
Full Time Fixed Term
Closing Date:   Friday 28 August 2015

 

We wish to appoint a (non-laboratory) Research Fellow in infectious disease research investment analyses. The ResIn team (as of October 2015) will be led by Dr Stuart Clarke and based within the University of Southampton at Southampton General Hospital. The project has been awarded funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to collate funding data from the G20 countries relating to infectious diseases (in particular pneumonia and neonatal infection research) and to assess how much funding is awarded to each disease area, how well investment correlates with the burden of disease and to measure the impact and outputs of research.

This post provides an exciting opportunity for someone with an interest in infectious disease research. It will also be of interest to those who would enjoy building tools and analyses that will be useful in informing the decisions and priority-setting of high-ranking policymakers (e.g. the World Health Organisation), the world’s leading biomedical and health research funders, and individual research institutions, groups and societies and researchers.

Applications are invited from those with an interest in infectious diseases, health policy or disease burden measurement. Relevant experience of a systematic and detailed approach to carrying out research projects is essential.

Click here for more information and to apply.