We’re creating an evidence base that supports replicable and scalable improvements to healthcare delivery and patient experiences.

Our manifesto

Everyone wants safe and high-quality healthcare, and health systems worldwide undertake improvement initiatives to achieve these priorities. Yet improvement projects are too often supported by weak evidence.

To date, efforts to develop the evidence base needed to support healthcare improvement have been hindered by challenges including a lack of scientific credibility, an overemphasis on small-scale quality improvement work and a limited infrastructure for participatory research.

Our goal is to create a world-leading scientific asset for the NHS about how to improve quality and safety in healthcare. We are guided by a highly participatory, collaborative ethos that combines academic rigour with the real concerns of the people who use and work in the NHS.

Our approach

Our work is underpinned by the principle that efforts to improve care should always be based on the highest quality evidence. So we’re boosting research activity to provide more clarity on what works, what doesn’t, and why.

We work directly with NHS patients and staff, as well as academics and the public, to produce evidence about improvement that is both highly relevant and scientifically excellent. We use innovative methods of research such as citizen science to deliver large-scale research projects.

Our projects study interventions and techniques aimed at improving quality and safety in healthcare, and are mindful of challenges to standardisation, harmonisation, replication and scaling.

We are committed to

Scientific excellence

We draw on established scientific traditions and develop systematic studies using high quality methods and theories.


We work in partnership in good faith, with trust sustained by genuinely cooperative behaviour.


We are committed to studying what’s important to NHS patients and staff.


Based at the University of Cambridge and funded by the Health Foundation, we enjoy full scientific independence.


We work for the public good, including the effective and efficient use of the public funds allocated to healthcare.

Governed by experts

  • Steering committee

    Provides strategic guidance on our vision, values and goals

  • Executive committee

    Manages THIS Institute on a day-to-day basis

  • Scientific advisory board

    Counsels on ensuring our work is scientifically excellent

  • Engagement and involvement advisory board

    Ensures that we conduct robust and meaningful engagement

A committed team

THIS Institute is made up of individuals dedicated to creating a world-leading scientific asset for the NHS.

Meet our colleagues

Co-created by two exceptional organisations

THIS Institute is made possible by the Health Foundation, an independent charity committed to bringing about better health and healthcare for people in the UK. Led by the University of Cambridge, globally renowned for its academic excellence and independence, our strength and influence extends right across the UK.

  • The Health Foundation.
  • University of Cambridge

Collaboration and partnership

Through a network of partners THIS Institute is leading a coordinated approach that is tethered to staff and patient experience and draws on multidisciplinary expertise.

Our partners range from patient organisations to research groups.

See who we work with

Healthcare Design Group, Cambridge Engineering Design Centre. Florence Nightingale Foundation. Health Services Research Unit, University of Aberdeen. PROMPT Maternity Foundation. Centre for Implementation Science. Bradford Institute for Health Research. McPin Foundation. Swansea Centre for Improvement and Innovation in Health and Social Care. Homerton College, University of Cambridge.

Vacancies at THIS Institute

Digital Project Manager

Date posted: 14/10/2019

Team: Thiscovery

Salary: £30,942 - £40,322

Contract: Fixed term

Closing date: 18/11/2019