The National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Network (NIHR CRN) maintains data to help coordinate and manage a national portfolio of clinical research. The NIHR CRN Integrated Research Intelligence System (IRIS) has four main components:

  • Central Portfolio Management System (CPMS): a central repository of research activity and management information.
  • Open Data Platform (ODP): a business intelligence platform that displays NIHR data through a range of dashboards.
  • Reference and Terminology Service (RTS): is a repository of standardised reference data which can be accessed by any approved client system from within, or outside NIHR.
  • Local Portfolio Management Systems (LPMS): regional systems for collating research intelligence.

CPMS also links to the Integrated Research Intelligence System (IRAS) and the ISRCTN Registry.

Together these datasets are used to manage core study information, capacity and capability data, study site information, research activity data, research management information.

CPMS holds more than 10-years’ of data on more than 26,000 studies that have recruited in excess 9,000,000 participants. Through ODP, the NIHR CRN can analyse this data by, for example, location, site type, speciality, phase, funder type, study design, geographical scope and funder type.

The NIHR CRN is also able to link this dataset with other health datasets. For example, to analyse research activity in relation to disease prevalence or admission rates. This has been helpful in targeting research at areas of unmet need.

In addition to these primary datasets, the NIHR CRN also holds information on the research workforce and research infrastructure funding. These datasets are not generally shared outside the NIHR.