A new IPR Policy Fellowship Programme has launched, which will bring senior policy and decision-makers working in central and local government, plus the third sector, to the University to connect with academics to address emerging health policy questions.

The specialist IPR Health Policy Fellowship Programme, which draws on one of the University’s core research strengths and complements existing specialist IPR Policy Fellowship Programmes for Net Zero and AI, builds on the long-standing, flagship IPR Policy Fellowship Programme.

This has been running for over 10 years and has brought hundreds of policymakers to the University to address a host of policy questions and challenges.

The initiative is part of the wider activities of the IPR, and the pilot Bath Policy Engagement Academy (BPEA), which aims to build new networks and engagement between our research expertise and the needs of policymakers.

Policymakers apply to take part, outlining policy questions or challenges they are working on in their professional roles. The team at the IPR work with them to arrange a tailored programme where they meet academics one-to-one over the course of one or two days, either in person or online. Policymakers can apply to take part individually, or as part of a team.

Prof Nick Pearce, IPR Director, explained: “The IPR Policy Fellowship Programme is a fantastic opportunity for senior policy and decision-makers to meet researchers from across the disciplines at the University of Bath whose research and expertise aligns with the questions they are interested in and challenges they are facing.

“This two-way exchange of knowledge is hugely valuable for policymakers, enabling them to take a step back and a chance for wider reflection. But it is also important for our academics. Conversations give a real insight into contemporary challenges policymakers face, as well as ideas about the policy relevance of research and future research direction.”

Amy Thompson, Head of Policy Programmes and Communications at the IPR added: “The IPR Policy Fellowship Programme and specialist streams for Health, AI and Net Zero offer academics at Bath the chance to build networks of senior policymakers aligned with their research interests.

“Meetings arranged as part of a policymaker’s visit to the University are intended to be the start of a two-way conversation. Over time, where these relationships are nurtured, this interaction can really help to unlock the potential of University of Bath research to achieve real-world impact and application to policy.”

For academics at Bath interested in learning more about the IPR Policy Fellowship Programmes, or keen to take part in future meetings, please email Andy Dunne (Policy Engagement Manager) – ajd65@bath.ac.uk . Any academic who has not taken part in a previous Policy Fellowship meeting, will be offered one-to-one training.