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Evaluation Researcher

South West Academic Health Science Network
Exeter, Devon
£30,000 to £40,000 per annum plus benefits
Closing date
25 Jul 2021

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Job Details

Are you passionate about using evaluation and learning to help shape health and care systems? We are looking for an Evaluation Researcher to undertake a range of evaluation and learning projects. This is a great opportunity to come and use your skills to test, develop and spread innovative practice and knowledge across the region. This opportunity will allow you to use your evaluation skills to directly shape and influence practice within services and organisations. As part of our recently launched strategy, we are committed to ensuring that we evaluate impact and generate learning to inform improving health equity at a local, regional and national level.

In 2013 a small group of founding member organisations established the South West Academic Health Science Network. They were motivated by a shared ambition to accelerate the adoption and spread of innovation across our region to improve population health and generate economic growth.

Step forward eight years and that ambition has become a reality. Working in collaboration with the AHSNs across England, our work transforms lives through innovation. In the last year, our work as a network of AHSNs has benefited over 258,000 people and leveraged over £462m of investment into the health and life science sector. You can read more about the impact of our work nationally in our latest AHSN Network impact report and regional work in our annual review.

At the South West AHSN we focus our efforts on improving health equity – identifying and spreading innovative practice that helps close health equity gaps in access to care, quality of care, opportunity for a healthy life and agency in managing individual health. Working with our members and partners, we share the ambition and opportunity to improve health equity through the adoption and spread of innovative practice.

We do this by:

  • Spreading innovative practice across the health and care system through collaboration, practical support and knowledge sharing.
  • Building capability in our region to spread innovative practice and improve quality.
  • Supporting evaluation and application of learning to improve the delivery of health and care services.

Spreading innovative practice in a health and care system is a challenging and complex task. The experts in our Evaluation and Learning Business Function are at the heart of our efforts to scale what works in health and care. They support us to understand and grow our impact, as we deliver national commissions and regional programmes, and they support us to the build the capability of our partners to spread innovative practice.

The Evaluation and Learning function within the South West Academic Health Science Network is currently undergoing an exciting period of transformation and expansion. As part of this we are looking to increase our focus on improving health equity through the adoption and spread of innovation. The Evaluation and Learning team is fortunate to have a wide and varied set of skills and specialisms, but we are looking to enhance this even further through recruitment to this post.

You will be part of a team that is working towards successfully delivering a number of portfolios that focus on national, regional and local projects. Our internal evaluation projects span three portfolios of work: (i) technology enabled care (e.g. evaluation of impact of remote consultations), (ii) discovery and spread of new innovations in healthcare (e.g. iQoro) and (iii) patient safety (e.g. PeriPrem project). As part of our strategy, we also have an exciting programme of work underway to consider how best to improve perinatal outcomes across the south west region as part of our health equity work. As a team, our skills encompass a wide range of different approaches including theory of change, logic models, rapid reviews, rapid cycle learning, formative and process evaluation, and results based accountability.

We are looking for an experienced, analytical and adaptable Evaluation Researcher to support our Evaluation and Learning Business Function as we seek to build our reputation as leaders in spreading innovative practise in health and care systems.

Role Profile

Evaluation Researcher

Working within a committed and supportive team of evaluation and data experts, the role of Evaluation Researcher provides a rare opportunity to undertake evaluations that are deeply embedded within an applied context. This comes with the opportunity to make a real difference to health outcomes across the region. The projects that you design and deliver will look to assess the impact and outcomes of services and interventions, as well as the processes that enable these changes to occur. Where appropriate, these findings will be used to inform how we support the adoption and spread of innovative practice regionally and nationally as part of the AHSN network.

Key success factors

  • Excellent knowledge and understanding of evaluation and learning methodology.
  • Experience of planning and delivering evaluation and learning activities in practice.
  • Fantastic communication skills, able to build great working relationships with a range of people quickly and easily.


  • Supporting the organisation and its members to better plan and deliver evaluation projects across the region.
  • Designing and conducting:

• Desk research, including literature reviews


• Interviews and focus groups


• Surveys and questionnaires


  • Supporting the collection of national metrics for our portfolio of nationally commissioned programme work.
  • Support the facilitation of workshops.
  • Carrying out qualitative and quantitative data analysis.
  • Writing evaluation reports, learning pieces, and presentations for clients, stakeholders and management.
  • Presenting information both internally and across member organisations.
  • Engaging and working with stakeholders across the sector in order to build effective relationships.
  • Collaborating with our programmes, communications and partnerships business functions to capture, share and embed learning from our work.

Experience we are looking for

  • Excellent qualitative research and analytical skills, for example ethnographic research, in-depth
  • interviews, focus groups and designing and researching case studies.
  • Excellent quantitative research and analytical skills, for example analysing datasets to understand trends overtime and differences between groups, health economics.
  • Excellent interpersonal and networking skills with the ability to build mutually beneficial relationships.
  • Experience of working with stakeholders to develop logic models and/or theories of change.
  • An understanding of methodologies used to implement, spread and adopt innovations.
  • Good understanding of the health and social care sector and current policy direction.
  • Excellent project management skills and experience.

Abilities and attributes

  • Flexible – comfortable working in a dynamic and changing environment.
  • Analyst – an analytical and methodological approach to evaluation and learning.
  • Learning mind-set – a commitment to ongoing learning and knowledge sharing.
  • Team player – able to support others and work towards a common goal.

Evaluation Researcher

Reporting to: Evaluation Lead

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