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Research can be a solitary activity but, more often, successful research is conducted in collaborative teams and through networks of researchers.

Like most aspects of life, there is added value in working together, sharing new perspectives and debating points of view.

The best science comes from deep discussion and the opinions and critique of other people in the field. We therefore encourage health visitors to be part of a research network rather than trying to do it alone. There are many different networks available such as:

National and Regional

Local and professional

Your healthcare organisation, service provider or university may offer a network for researchers. Search the internet for local opportunities if you don’t know them already.

The iHV Research Network

The Institute will be building its own research network over the next 12 months.

We already have an inaugural group in the North of England:

We would like to expand this and develop health visiting research groups across the country to build the network. To achieve this will require leadership and motivation to set up,  but in time this will enable us to grow our own research, to lead on the evidence to support health visiting practice and to build research capacity across the country.

Dr Karen Whittaker is the contact for the Northern network and those interested in joining this network can contact her at KWhittaker1@uclan.ac.uk

At this stage we are putting out a call to any health visitor researcher who may be university or practice based to come forward if they would be interested in setting up an iHV Research group in their area. The Institute will discuss with emerging groups how they might be supported to go forward and become a network.