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We want to see health & care improvement through quality research
rooted in our organisations and systems, enabled by an
effective and valued R&D workforce.

The Forum consists of those in R&D management, support & leadership roles working in with and for providers and commissioners of health and care. Our network is broad and inclusive of patients and the public, non-traditional settings, joint research offices, higher education sponsor teams and more.

Members who volunteer their time lead the Forum, represent the R&D Forum community, and create our value, content and outputs.

The Forum Leadership Team

Representing the Forum to stakeholders, the team oversees the Forum strategy and leads areas of activity to move the work of the Forum forward as a body.

The Forum leadership team is made up of:

  • Exec Committee
  • Group Chairs 
  • Management Team

Forum Executive Committee

The committee oversees the strategic direction and daily operations of the Forum as a network. The group is responsible for oversight of finance and governance and financial oversight, contractors, communications and the process for conference and events. 


  • Dr Shona Haining, Head of Research & Evidence,. NECS
  • Dr Angela Ball, Independent consultant
  • Mrs Angela Topping, Head of Newcastle Joint Research Office

Forum Management & Business Support Services

The Forum manager supports all the groups and the leadership team in driving the strategy and content of the Forum. The Manager is charged with implementing the strategic plan on a daily basis, engaging with community members and partners, and developing our projects and initiatives. The current Forum Manager is Kate Greenwood.

Group Chairs

The Chairs of the Forum Groups are members of the Leadership Team that oversees strategy and leads areas of activity to move the work of the Forum forward as a body

Christian Sparke

Chris comes from a clinical background in critical care, specialising in cardiac and neurosurgery at the National Heart, Barts and Chelsea and Westminster. She has extensive operational experience in clinical research with the Royal College of Surgeons, Royal Papworth Hospital and University of Cambridge. Chris worked for the NIHR CRN in a variety of roles including Research Facilitator for critical and emergency care, Lead Network Officer and a combined post as Study Support Service and Industry Operations Manager. She was previously a GCP and Valid Informed Consent facilitator for the Eastern region, AcoRD Lead for five years, part of the working group for the setup of the EOE Trauma Network and a previous member of the EOE RDS Management Board. Her current role is as NIHR Portfolio Support Manager and AcoRD Specialist for Cambridge Biomedical Research Campus. Chris has been involved in regional and national training and facilitation programmes and workshops with the NIHR, HRA, RD Forum, UoC, UEA and others organisations throughout her career.

See all Group Chairs

R&D Contacts Directory
Resources & Output

R&D Contacts Directory

The contact details of all R&D offices across the UK.
Join the R&D Forum

Join the R&D Forum

Click to join the R&D Forum, the UK network for the R&D Community.
R&D Forum Groups
Groups & Current Work

R&D Forum Groups

Our groups are more to the value of the R&D Forum. Find out more about our active groups.