The NHS Institute closed on 31 March 2013. This website is being maintained in the short term so that registered users can download documents and view videos (but webinars are no longer available). A number of key resources will transfer to the NHS Improving Quality’s website. Once this website is closed you'll be able to see all publicly available content on The National Archives website:*/

Please note that from May 1st 2013 the ability to order our hard copy materials will be temporarily suspended as we finalise the closedown of the NHS Institute and complete the transition to NHS Improving Quality (part of NHS England). It is currently anticipated that many of the materials will be passed onto NHS England and should become available again later this year.

Further messages on its future will be posted here over the coming weeks.
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We help the NHS build internal innovation capacity and capabilities by offering master classes as well as entire training programmes for our products.

NHS leaders and front line staff learn how to successfully employ and adapt innovative approaches to healthcare improvement.

Some of our work includes:

  • Creating a Culture for Innovation
  • Master classes for the ebd approach, Thinking Differently, Observation
  • Innovation Practitioner Programme

Creating a culture for Innovation
Creating a culture for innovation is a programme based on findings from the public and private sectors which has identified seven dimensions of organisational culture that are most closely related to the level of innovative output over time: Risk taking; Resources; Information; Targets; Tools; Rewards; Relationships.

The NHS Institute has developed an online organisational assessment tool based on these dimensions, and has also created a guide which will provide organisations and teams with practical steps that they can take to create a more effective and suitably innovative culture.

We have also created two guides which are available to order now, which provide organisations and teams with practical steps that they can take to create a more effective culture for innovation. Creating the Culture for Innovation - A Practical Guide for Leaders describes the literature base behind the seven dimensions, gives guidance on applications of the framework, and provides 37 practical tips and examples of ways to enhance the culture for innovation in organisations and systems. A shorter companion guide for senior leaders, Creating the Culture for Innovation: Guide for Executives is also available which provides an overview of the concepts, and practical tips for leaders to enable them to support and build an effective innovation culture.

Masterclasses – The ebd approach, Thinking Differently, Observation
The ebd approach (experience based design) brings patients and staff together to share the role of improving care and re-designing services. It has been developed by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement as a way of helping frontline NHS teams make the improvements their patients really want.

The masterclasses were aimed at senior leaders and frontline clinical staff, and looked at how to use the ebd approach to improve patient experience.  The slides from these workshops can be accessed by clicking here. We are currently inviting attendees who attended the masterclasses the opportunity to feedback their experiences of putting ebd into practice - so that we can continue to improve the approach - through a short survey and case study capture which is available here

Thinking Differently is a published product providing a range of practical approaches and tools that many NHS leaders and front-line teams have used to fundamentally rethink pathways of care and service delivery. This guide not only provides learning for improving services, but for transforming services. There are currently no new masterclasses planned, but slides from the sessions that have been held will help you with learning and implementation of the tools and can be accessed in the near future.

Observation is a key tool that we use within the NHS Institute. It is a technique that we have taken from the worlds of design and ethnography. The principles of observation are already incorporated into a number of our products (such as Productive Ward). We have created a simple tool for use in workshops that demonstrates the power of observation. It helps NHS staff to realise that taking a step back and looking at their service with fresh eyes can be an incredibly effective way of understanding how they can improve the care that they deliver.

The Observation DVD tool, is a self directed workshop that can be used with groups to help them experience the different perspective that observation can bring. The purpose is to help people see and experience the potential value of observation so that they may consider using observation within their projects.

Innovation Practitioner Programme
Innovation is critical for delivering high quality cost effective healthcare. Leaders in the NHS need appropriate skills and capability to create and deliver new and innovative healthcare solutions. The Innovation Practitioner Programme was specifically designed to provide NHS staff with an integrated package of innovation tools such as Thinking Differently, the ebd approach and Observation and, most importantly, guidance in their application.

The programme taught the theory and practice of using a range of creative thinking tools and techniques within the NHS Institute portfolio to transform health services. It provided some useful learning for the group that took part in the programme and details of their projects and outcomes are available in our case studies section.