Go to navigation

Introduction for researchers

If you are thinking of doing research for or on behalf of Medway Children and Adults Directorate, this page tells you what you need to think about before you start.

The council is keen to promote itself as a learning organisation. One way in which it can further this aim is by encouraging research as a valuable learning tool. However, it also has a duty of care to service users, their families and carers and to staff who might be the subjects of any research. This is what the approvals process is there to do.

It is in everyone’s interests to ensure that research is carried out to a high standard. Research includes any study, survey or consultation intended to gather information which involves access to anyone in one of the groups mentioned above, either directly or indirectly.

What this means

Before starting your research, you should contact the Research and Information Team to discuss what you might want to do. If your research idea seems suitable, you will need to obtain approval and will have to:

  • prepare a research proposal, which should cover the areas outlined in the research proposal guide
  • complete a research application form (pdf 30KB) for submission to the research co-ordinator. To use this file, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have this on your computer, please use our advice page.

If you are undertaking research through a university, your supervisor will provide advice and support in preparing your research proposal.

If you decide to submit a research application

Your research application will need to go through a research approval process. The council will decide whether to approve your research based on the criteria covered in the application form and your research proposal.

Once it has your proposal and application form, it will give you a decision as soon as it can. If your application is straightforward, you have addressed all the areas outlined in the research proposal guide and it does not involve issues of high risk to participants, your application should be processed quite quickly. If your application is more complex, it will be referred to the Research Approvals Group and this decision might take a bit longer.

Provided your application is approved, you will be able to go ahead and the council will arrange for you to access participants as necessary. Your research will be registered on the council’s research database and will be also monitored by a named contact within the Children and Adults Directorate.

If you do not receive approval, you will be given reasons and information about how to appeal against the decision. Where possible, you will be given advice on how you might change your proposal to ensure it complies with the council’s requirements.

Who to contact to find out more

Your first step is to contact the Research and Information Team to discuss your ideas and to request a Research Application Pack. Phone 01634 332445 or email researchandinfo@medway.gov.uk