Man talking to female researcher

What is Research for the Future?

Research for the Future is a partnership between NIHR Clinical Research Network Greater Manchester, NorthWest EHealth,  Health Innovation Manchester and Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, who host the campaign.

Our aim is to improve recruitment to NIHR Portfolio research studies by building a database of volunteers who consent to be approached in the future about studies they are eligible to participate in.

The campaign is currently being promoted across Greater Manchester and the surrounding areas, to encourage as many people as possible to get involved. Volunteers receive information about research opportunities, relevant local health events and a newsletter twice a year.

Research for the Future consists of a series of ‘Help BEAT’ campaigns. Each Help BEAT campaign invites people with a particular health condition to hear more about research going on in to that condition.


We are currently running:

The Research for the Future team is based within an NHS contact centre. We guide volunteers through the registration process, help keep their details up to date and contact them when opportunities become available for them to take part in research. We contact volunteers by email, telephone or post.

How can we help you recruit to your research?

We aim to help researchers recruit to time and target by informing our volunteers about research studies they are eligible to take part in.

If you are a researcher and would like to recruit volunteers from the Research for the Future database, you need to ensure this has been outlined as part of your recruitment strategy and appropriate ethics approval is in place.

Study documentation will need to be provided to the Research for the Future team including protocol, patient information sheet, ethics approval and information about where the study is taking place.

The Research for the Future team can then contact volunteers that live within a reasonable travelling distance of the research centre(s), briefly

outlining the study and commitment required.

The people interested in participating will contact you directly for further information and to discuss eligibility. We never pass any volunteer details to researchers/research teams.

If your study is a questionnaire or focus group, it may be possible for it to be sent direct from the contact centre by email. Print and postal costs must be met by the researcher if it needs to be sent by post.

For more information or advice on any of the above please contact Katherine Grady, the Research for the Future programme manager:

What other support can my research benefit from?

The NIHR Clinical Research Network Greater Manchester is able to:

  • Assist you registering your study for NIHR support.
  • Provide advice to ensure you have all the necessary study approvals in place to enable you to access Research for the Future volunteers.
  • Help with your study’s feasibility and strengthen your funding bid. They have access to a system called FARSITE which links to GP data systems and provides anonymised information about the number of people meeting eligibility for a study. If Research for the Future volunteers have registered their NHS number with the campaign and have a FARSITE GP, they can provide you with the number of people who are eligible to participate and who have expressed an interest in being contacted about research.
  • We can tell you how many potential volunteers are registered to the campaign in your region/area and can contact them on your behalf to find out whether they may be interested in taking part in your study.
  • We can help you decide the best approach to use to invite Research for the Future volunteers to participate in your study.

These services are all provided free of charge. For more information contact us or find out more about the NIHR Clinical Research Network’s Study Support Service.