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Vacancy details

Closing date: 16 August 2021

Associate Clinical Director for primary care and the research hubs (CRN Wessex)


CRN Wessex has an exciting opportunity for an Associate Director for Primary Care and Research Hubs (ADPCRH).

As part of a national network of NIHR CRN leaders, the ADPCRH will support the CRN Wessex Clinical Director (CD) as deputy chair of the LCRN Executive and will chair the LCRN Primary Care Research Leadership Group.

The ADPCRH will develop and lead the CRN Wessex strategy for primary care research and research hubs, creating opportunities for under-served communities to access health and care research easily within their communities.

This is a high profile role and the ADPCRH will have a passion for bringing health and care research opportunities to people and an in-depth understanding of how the local NHS “works” in order to forge and maintain productive partnerships along health and care pathways, across organisational boundaries.


3PAs/1.5 sessions per week

Accountable to

Local Clinical Research Network (LCRN) Clinical Director


24 months in the first instance until March 2024 (end of current LCRN contract), renewable thereafter by mutual agreement.

Receives direct reports from

CRN Direct Research Delivery Team, Research Delivery Managers, Research Hub Managers/Lead Nurses

Key relationships

  • NIHR CRN Leadership and Coordinating Centre
  • NIHR lead for Primary Care
  • LCRN Clinical Director
  • LCRN Partnership Group
  • LCRN Primary Care, Community, Public Health and Social Care Leads
  • LCRN Industry Operations Manager
  • NIHR School for Primary Care Research Wessex Leadership
  • Other LCRN Research Delivery Managers
  • National network of LCRN Research Delivery Managers
  • Wessex LCRN Primary care locality leads
  • Staff in the LCRN support functions
  • CEOs, Senior Staff, R&D Leads, Research Leads, Nurses and Managers within NHS organisations
  • Universities, Industry and other stakeholder organisations


The post holder will be required to work across the Wessex region (remotely or in person where necessary), including the main LCRN offices and Wessex Research Hubs.

Role purpose

The post holder will fulfil the role of LCRN Associate Director for Primary Care and the Research Hubs (ADPCRH) and support the Clinical Director (CD), Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Deputy Chief Operating Officer (DCOO) to implement the LCRN’s research strategy and oversee the set up and delivery of NIHR Portfolio studies.

The ADPCRH will have areas of management responsibility to be agreed on appointment. The ADPCRH will be a member of the LCRN Executive and Chair the LCRN Primary Care Research Leadership Group. The ADPCRH will act as the LCRN Industry Clinical Lead for Primary Care. The ADPCRH will deputise, where appropriate, for the CD.

Key duties and responsibilities 

  • Assist the CD in the day to day running of the LCRN and provide specific visibility and leadership for the primary, community, public health and social care network structures across the local geography.
  • Support the CD, COO and DCOO in implementing the CRN Wessex Strategy
  • Deputise for the CD and represent the LCRN at regional and national meetings.
  • Lead and Develop the Wessex research hubs to deliver high throughput commercial and non-commercial lower-intensity clinical trials (possibly aligned to the national PRC network).
  • Provide clinical intelligence and advice to the CD, COO and DCOO to aid resource allocation to primary and community care and (in liaison with the CRN clinical leadership) also to public health and social care Specialty Groups and Partner Organisations to ensure optimal performance against the Performance Management Framework.
  • Provide clinical leadership, advice and accountability to primary and community care, public health and social care LCRN Specialty Groups (within the agreed delivery organisational structures).
  • Contribute to the review of relevant Specialty Group leads and Clinical Leads and, where appropriate, undertake annual appraisal.

Person specification


  • Knowledge of the local health research economy, specifically in primary and community care, and a demonstrable understanding of the different issues that affect different NHS sectors and constituencies.
  • Knowledge of the NIHR performance targets and reporting systems.
  • Proven high-level planning and organisational skills with recent achievement record within a large, complex healthcare environment.
  • Proven interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively with clinical and management colleagues at all levels across a range of organisations.
  • Ability to contribute constructively and behave professionally in meetings; at all times retaining a CRN-wide perspective
  • Ability to avoid any potential conflicts of interest that may arise if holding two potentially conflicting professional roles within Wessex
  • Experience of healthcare provision within setting such as general practice, community care, public health or social care in the current NHS


  • Prior leadership experience within the NIHR research infrastructure e.g. Local (or National) Specialty Group lead or industry lead, CRN Associate Lead or CRN Executive role and/or within NHS research infrastructure (e.g. R & D Director or Deputy Director).
  • Significant personal experience of conducting later-phase clinical trials and other well-designed studies.
  • Significant experience of setting up and conducting commercial clinical trials.

Application process

Applicants are invited to send a personal statement of no more than 500 words and their CV to by 09:00 on Monday 16th August 2021.