Health Research Classification System

Reproducible and meaningful analysis of research funded by different organisations, or within a single organisation, requires the use of a common system to classify the data. The UKCRC Partners developed a bespoke Health Research Classification System (HRCS) to categorise all types of health research across all diseases and areas of health. The HRCS links a description of the science to money and allows health research funding patterns to be analysed. Use of this single common system enables direct comparison of research activity across different research portfolios and different funding organisations.

The HRCS can be used as a strategic tool to analyse funding associated with different research areas. Analysis of research classified by the HRCS creates an evidence base to inform planning and facilitate coordination between research funders.

The HRCS has been used to analyse the health research portfolios of the largest government and charity health research funders in the UK and research funded by smaller and medium-sized UK medical research charities. A website called HRCS Online has been developed to explain the HRCS and to provide ongoing support for users of the system at all levels.

From the end of 2009 a new group has taken charge of the HRCS within the UK. The UKCRC Health Research Analysis Forum (HRAF) will oversee the maintenance and development of the HRCS, promote its use and facilitate the conduct of any future health research analyses. For further information contact info@hrcsonline.net.