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Improvement Science @ Cardiff: From Network to Centre

17 October 2013

All of us want healthcare that is safe. As we reflect on how to address the issues raised by the Francis and Berwick Reports, the case for better understanding of how this can be assured is increasingly evident. Developing the evidence, understanding and methodological expertise necessary for healthcare improvement depends on sustained interdisciplinary endeavour and clinical-academic partnerships. Cardiff University has an abundance of talented researchers and clinicians engaged with this agenda. 

On October 17th 2013 Professor Davina Allen, Cardiff School of Healthcare Sciences, hosted a one day interdisciplinary workshop organised with the explicit aim of providing a forum for thinking about the actions necessary to enable progression from the current virtual network status to an interdisciplinary clinical-academic centre. The list of delegates included Cardiff University academics from across all three Colleges; clinicians, policy representatives (Public Health Wales, 1000 Lives Campaign), and health service representatives (including Director of the South East Wales Academic Health Partnership).

Programme Content

To see the presentations for the event, please follow the links to the right of this page. 

  • A series of presentations selected to showcase improvement science research across the range of participating schools and disciplines within the University, with purposive facilitation to encourage a focus on the following questions:
    • How does this contribute to improvement science at Cardiff?
    • What are the implications for future agenda?
  • A collaborative inquiry into the active ingredients of ‘PROMPT’ led by Professor Tim Draycott University of Bristol, designed to encourage reflection on the value of academic-clinical partnerships for improvement science
  • A presentation by Professor Charles Vincent, Imperial College London, on creating an improvement centre
  • A world café in which participants considered the following critical questions.
    • What do you have already?
    • What is the long term vision?
    •  What range of disciplines?
    • What kind of base and partnerships?
    • What is the value to partners – and patients!
    • Core funding and stability. How will this be achieved?
    • Locating within formal structures. Pros and cons

Conversations were continued over dinner at the Cardiff Hilton.

Organisation, hosting, facilitation

The event was organised and hosted by Professor Davina Allen, as part of the Health Foundation Improvement Science Fellowship and as convenor of Improvement Science@Cardiff. The proceedings were facilitated by Professor Bill Lucas, University of Winchester (Co-lead Health Foundation Improvement Science Leadership Programme). Table conversations were facilitated and content captured by Fiona Reed, Fiona Reed Associates, (Co-lead Health Foundation Improvement Science Leadership Programme), and Health Foundation Improvement Science Fellows: Professor Tim Draycott, University of Bristol; Dr Julie Reed, Imperial College London; Dr Carl MaCrae, Imperial College London; Dr Christopher Burton, Bangor University and Sharon Williams, Cardiff University (CARBS).

Public proceedings and open conversations were captured visually by Eleanor Beer


Thanks are due to:

  • The Health Foundation, who supported the event, funded the dinner and graphic facilitation
  • Cardiff School of Healthcare Sciences, who funded the lunch


“Thank you for inviting me to today's event, which I thought went very well indeed and my congratulations to you for getting it altogether.  I think I know a bit more about improvement science than I did before today.”

“Many thanks indeed for inviting to me a really spectacular and insightful day of learning- and to hear (& hopefully ) contribute to thinking about next steps; I do look forward to hearing or discussing what next!”

“It was a terrific meeting and huge success clearly.  Tremendous foundation for next steps.  Many congratulations.”

“Thank you so much for yesterday. I just wanted to repeat what I said last night.  It was an excellent day and only you could have pulled it all together. I think Cardiff came across so very well and everyone I have spoken with today was really positive. I just loved the interaction and I am still smiling.  I am sure you must be exhausted”.

“It was a triumph”

“Well done again on a fab event”

“Thanks once again for organising such a productive and enjoyable day last week!  I thought Eleanor's graphical capture of the day was awesome and something I would look to do in our own future workshops. “

“Just a quick email to say how much I enjoyed participating in the event on Thursday”.

“I've been meaning to get in touch for a couple of days but had a long weekend in north Wales with no access to email. It took a couple of days for my mind to settle (in a good way) following the many interesting and thought provoking conversations and discussions. In fact I'm still inspired a good few days later.”

“Thanks for such a great day last week. It was truly inspirational and very thought provoking. I hope something substantial comes out of it.  I am keen to be involved in some way.”

“Can I also take this opportunity to thank you for the invite to last week’s improvement science event. It was a great and inspiring day.”

“I just wanted to say thank you for including me in yesterday's event - it was really fantastic: a great atmosphere, interesting work, and a much valued chance to chat with colleagues.  It was also fun!!”

Read more about Improvement Science @ Cardiff.