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The National Research Register

  • Last modified date:
    27 October 2010

When a clinician or manager wants to access research findings, they can turn to databases of published research such as Medline or systematic reviews databases such as the Cochrane Library. However, accessing information on research in progress is more difficult.

The National Research Register (NRR) is a register of ongoing and recently completed research projects funded by, or of interest to, the United Kingdom's National Health Service. Information is held on over 80,000 research projects and is expected to grow further, as well as entries from the Medical Research Council's Clinical Trials Register, and details on reviews in progress collected by the NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination.

As the most comprehensive register of current research in the NHS, it has enormous potential to:

  • identify unpublished research - particularly important to systematic reviewers of research;
  • provide early warning on research which may lead to important research findings;
  • improve the uptake and participation in clinical trails;
  • identify and bring together researchers between and across related areas of research;
  • help avoid unnecessary duplication in research - a waste of resources as well as potentially unethical.

Records held on the NRR can include details on the research title, research question, methodology, sample group, outcome measures and research project contacts. Projects are indexed on an ongoing basis, using the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) thesaurus of the National Library of Medicine.

There is more information about the National Research Register and technical details for information providers on the NRR search site, including a copy of the new guidance Other sources of information about ongoing research

Each of the National NHS R&D Programmes have their own web pages which includes further details about currently ongoing research.

You can find an index of the national pages here.

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