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Clinical Academic Research Partnerships (CARP)


27 April 2022


V2.0 (Aug 2022)


The Clinical Academic Research Partnerships (CARP) is a one-to-three-year funding scheme run in partnership between the Medical Research Council (MRC) and NIHR. It’s designed to provide research-qualified health professionals, not currently undertaking any substantial research activity, the opportunity to form a collaborative high-quality research partnership with established biomedical and applied health researchers, and with protected time and funding to enhance their research skills and experience.

Each award will provide between 20% to 50% of the applicant’s basic salary to support protected research time, and costs to undertake the project.

We welcome project proposals across all remit and interest areas of MRC and NIHR. Your project can range from basic discovery science to translational and applied health research.

Are you eligible?

You can apply if you have the following:

  • are a member of NHS staff, staff contracted to the NHS or working in the care or public health sectors. This includes, but is not limited to, doctors, dentists, nurses, midwives, allied health professionals, healthcare scientists, pharmacists, clinical psychologists, registered public health practitioners and others, in either primary care, secondary care, community care or public health;
  • are working at consultant level or in other senior roles, for example Agenda for Change Band 7 or above. You should be working at a senior level with specialised knowledge and demonstrable capacity for professional independence and leadership;
  • hold a PhD, MD or equivalent postgraduate qualification; for example, three years’ consolidated research time where you have been the intellectual drive behind a project and achieved strong outputs from your research experience;
  • are not undertaking any substantive research activity. Applicants will usually have limited or no research funding. We expect you will have less than half a day per week dedicated to research within your current contract. For example, one programmed activity (PA), a week within your current job plan. We welcome proposals from applicants with more dedicated research time, but you should ensure that you articulate the added value of the award. For example, to support you in working in new environments or with new research partners.


  • Basic discovery science, translational and applied health research.
  • Disease specific mechanistic hypotheses.
  • Primary care, population health, public health, mental health, molecular pathology.
  • Global health issues and primarily benefits those living in low and middle-income countries, or applications proposing interdisciplinary approaches.

Key Dates

  • Launch date: 26th August 2022
  • Application deadline: 17th November 2022
  • Short-listing: April 2023
  • Outcome: June 2023

How to apply

For information on how to apply and further supporting documentation to help with your application, please visit the UK Research and Innovation website. Your host organisation will be able to provide advice and guidance on completing your application.

What type of research partner you need

You must have at least one research partner. The research partner must have a proven track record of securing funding and delivering high-quality research. The research partner must be able to provide a suitably stable environment for the duration of the award.

For further information on research partners.

What support you need from the host research organisation 

You should hold a contract of employment or an honorary contract with the host research organisation for the duration of the award. Please note there is no requirement to relinquish your NHS (or equivalent employer) post in order to take up the award.

Find out more about eligible organisations.

What support you need from your employer

Find out more information about employer support.

Supporting Information 

For further information please visit the UK Research and Innovation website or if you have any queries email