Practice and policy collaboration

Our research is being used to develop and evaluate public health interventions, and is guided by the needs of public health practice. We are pursuing the following strands of work to encourage knowledge exchange.

Relationship building

CEDAR researchers work with public health practitioners as part of their research studies. We also engage with practitioners and policymakers at a local, regional and national level to share our research and to develop understanding of public health and policy perspectives. We are a member of the UK Health Forum, and we work with Public Health England, both nationally and through its regional teams including the Knowledge and Intelligence Team (East).

We are collaborating with the Centre for Science and Policy in Cambridge in their Policy Fellowship scheme, which provides senior Whitehall policymakers with relationship building opportunities with researchers over the course of two year Fellowships. CEDAR is supporting a Fellowship stream themed around CEDAR research areas, with current Fellows from the Department for Transport, Local Government Association, Cabinet Office and Government Office for Science. Read a case study from Pauline Reeves, Department for Transport.

Media and resources

As well as media resources including this website, Twitter and our regular bulletin, we produce Evidence Briefs, succinct summaries of research aimed at supporting evidence based decision making. Read our Evidence Briefs here.

We also make all the Evidence Submissions that we produce for policy and guidance bodies available to download here.

Our scientific papers are all available through our online publications database. Here you can search hundreds of CEDAR scientific papers by author, journal, study, title and abstract keywords. An increasing number of our papers are open access, and when they are not in open access journals, where rules allow we will make pdfs of papers available. Almost all papers are Open Access.

Workshops and events

The MRC Epidemiology Unit/CEDAR Seminar Series is open to all, and speakers in this series frequently engage with topics of direct relevance to public health practice. Details of all Seminars are advertised here.

In October 2013 we held a Centre-wide event What shall we do about diet and physical activity? to explore our emerging science in diet and physical activity and discuss its implications for policy and practice.

In November 2014, our research and policy meeting focused on neighbourhood food environments, diet and health. Full details at

Individual studies also organise events and seminars of relevance to policy makers, such as the Modelling on the Move seminar series and the Commuting and Health – Research and Policy Forum.

If you would like to be notified of future events, please sign up to our quarterly bulletin.

Tools and training

Drawing on our expertise in evaluation, and in collaboration with other organisations, we explored the development of a tool to support the evaluation of complex public health interventions. Although this tool did not go into production, learning from the process is informing our input into national projects to support evaluation. You can read more about the project here.

In public health modelling, we are seeking to make James Woodcock’s ITHIM (Integrated Transport and Health Impact Modelling) tool, which estimates the population health and environmental impacts of different transport scenarios, available to professional groups such as transport planners. Read more about ITHIM here.

The public health modelling team is also collaborating in the development of the National Propensity to Cycle Tool (NPCT) for the Department for Transport. The interactive web based tool will be useful for local authority planners and campaigners tasked with planning where to invest in cycling. The model will not only indicate where cycling might be expected to increase the most but also what the health and carbon benefits of this would be. Read more about the NPCT here.

Capacity building for knowledge exchange

Building research capacity for the future is central to the CEDAR mission, and as well as nurturing academic careers, we are providing our students and early career researchers with  training and opportunities to help develop skills relevant to knowledge exchange outside academia. This includes media training, involving researchers at all levels in interactions with policymakers, and supporting secondments into service settings to encourage the sharing of skills and perspectives. We are also open to hosting secondments in CEDAR from those working in policy and practice.

Students and early career researchers have been directly involved in the evaluation of public health programmes such as Activ8 and Energize, and EYPAN in Cambridgeshire, and we are open to future collaborations where public health need and our research portfolio overlap.

Find out more

You can sign up to our newsletter to be kept informed about this work. If you have any thoughts or questions about how CEDAR works with practice and policy partners, please contact:

Oliver Francis
Telephone:  01223 746892
More contact details here