Research Strategy and Policies

The PCRC is the only UK charity solely focused on researching advanced prostate cancer. Our mission is to use science to turn yesterday’s hope into tomorrow’s reality, so that the next generation of men have better therapies, enabling them to live longer and happier lives. Research, and our community of patients, carers and supporters are at the centre of all we do.

We recently started an ambitious five year strategy, which will help us deliver substantially more investment into research. We are a small charity, but this year, we spent over £1 million on research for the first time in a single year. As we continue to grow, we hope to invest even more. This year we are funding four research projects; next year we will fund seven.

But it’s not enough for us to simply fund research. We will fund the very best research, the research which has the most meaning for men with advanced prostate cancer and their families. We are currently reviewing our research strategy, and will be publishing our new research strategy in early 2019.

In the meantime, our old Research Strategy is available here.

We also have policies on peer review and conflict of interest.

PCRC is a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC). The way we invest in research conforms to their five principles — accountability, balance, independence of decision-making, rotation of scientific advisers and impartiality. We also endorse their Statement on the Use of Animals in Research.

Scientific Committees

Grants over £50,000 per annum and/or longer than one year are externally peer-reviewed by our Scientific Advisory Committee and External Advisory Committee. These are two separate groups consisting of world-leading cancer research scientists. They provide objective advice to ensure the research we fund is world-class. From 2018 onwards, PCRC is introducing a new ‘mid-term’ review process. An independent expert will assess each of our research projects from an outside perspective. Their feedback will help us to continuously improve the quality of our research.

Scientific Advisory Committee

Our Scientific Advisory Committee is led by Professor Tony Davies, a pioneer in immunology and cancer research. Tony was the Deputy Director of the Institute of Cancer Research.

The Scientific Advisory Committee consists of UK research scientists who are leading authorities in cancer research. Their role, under the direction of the Chairman, is to review grant proposals.

The current Committee consists of:
Professor Colin Cooper
Dr Manit Arya
Professor Jonathon Ashmore
Professor Anne Ridley

External Advisory Committee

The External Advisory Committee are completely independent eminent research scientists working outside the UK in areas relevant to the research funded by PCRC. Their role is to provide unbiased and completely objective advice to ensure that all the research PCRC funds is world class.

Professor Stefan Offermanns (Germany)
Professor Ian Hickson FRS (Denmark)
Professor Simon Hayward (US)

How do we ensure our research is both valid and thorough at every stage?

All of our research projects are continually evaluated using Research KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and Metrics. Broadly speaking, these are data points that provide insight into operational performance. The use of metrics is two-fold: improving processes internally and ensuring a high level of transparency for donors and other interested parties. The benefits for internal operations include:

• Identifying where process improvements can be made
• Identifying where resource allocations can be changed
• Effectively managing workloads across teams
• Establishing performance benchmarks
• Providing data-driven rationale to leadership for additional resources

For further information on these processes, please see our Research Impact Framework

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