About ARC North Thames

The National Institute of Health and Care Research (NIHR) funds, enables and delivers world-leading health and social care research that improves people’s health and wellbeing and promotes economic growth.

NIHR Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) are regional collaborations between organisations that undertake applied health and care research. The NIHR has awarded £135 million over five years to 15 ARCs across England. 

NIHR ARC North Thames is one of 15 ARCs, supporting applied health and care research that responds to the needs of local populations and health and care systems. Our national leadership area is Population Health.


What we do

ARC North Thames develops innovative research that meets the most pressing health and social care needs of our local and national communities, and quickly puts our findings into practice for those who need it most. 

Over six million people live in our region, an ethnically diverse population living in inner city, urban and rural communities across parts of London, Bedfordshire, Essex and Hertfordshire – a total of 26 boroughs. The neighbourhoods we cover range from the sixth most affluent in England to the third most deprived.

ARC North Thames is a partnership between six leading universities (University College London, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Queen Mary University of London, London School of Economics, City and University of East London), our Academic Health Service Network (AHSN), our region’s NHS and local authority (LA) organisations and communities, industry and charities. We collaborate across our region and nationally to identify problems that can be addressed through high quality, generalisable, applied health and care research, which we deliver with our partners.

We are hosted by Barts Health NHS Trust and part of UCLPartners Academic Health Science Partnership, which brings together clinical and academic organisations working across the translational innovation pipeline – from discovery and evaluation through to adoption and spread – to improve population health.

Further ARC North Thames partners include 23 acute trusts (including tertiary referral centres and district general hospitals), community and mental health trusts, and 20 Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) as well as patients and local communities.

Our vision

We are working to:

  • Develop leading health service, population health and social care research that can quickly be put into practice 
  • Contribute to higher quality, fairer, better-linked services that meet complex needs and improve user outcomes and experience
  • Develop structures for research supported by:
    - thriving public, patient and community involvement
    - high quality training, mentoring and supervision of future research leaders
  • Continue to attract funding for research and implementation support and ensure our findings reach a wide range of audiences.

More about ARCs 

Each NIHR ARC is made up of local providers of NHS services, local providers of care services, NHS commissioners, local authorities, universities, private companies and charities. 

NIHR ARCs also act to close the second translational gap and increase the rate at which research findings are implemented into practice. The 15 ARCs work collaboratively to address national research priorities, with individual ARCs providing national leadership in their areas of expertise.

ARCs are building on the success of Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRCs).

Impact and Legacy

Since October 2019, the NIHR Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) have continued the work of the NIHR CLAHRCs (the ARC predecessors). ARCs build on the legacy of the CLAHRCS to deliver world-class research and improve services and outcomes for local and national communities. 

Read about the impact of some of our completed work

Read the Legacy of the CLAHRCs 2014-2019

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