Apply to be part of the 2024 Improvement Leader Fellowship

Applications are now open to join our Improvement Leader Fellowship. This is an opportunity for anyone working to improve the health and care of people in Northwest London to develop new skills, gain valuable experience and develop a project to make a real impact on the health, care and wellbeing of local people.

The Fellowship involves online and in-person meetings, interactive workshops, personal mentorship, accessible materials, expert presentations and an inclusive support network of like minded 'improvers'. The syllabus has been devised and is delivered by our Collaborative Learning and Capacity Building Theme

Your study will be led by health and care sector leaders who will work with you on a real world project of your choosing. Throughout the Fellowship we aim to develop your confidence, authority and ability to advance change in organisations to build capacity, spread and sustainability.

About the Fellowship

The Fellowship is a free 12-month bespoke programme of seminars and workshops with an induction followed by monthly day long learning and networking meetings. 

Learning sessions will cover:

You are expected to work on your quality/service improvement project with direct relevance to patients and population health benefit.

You should consider how your potential project will align with your organisation/context priorities.

Is this for me?

One thing that makes our Fellowship special is the diversity of people involved. We welcome applications from a range of backgrounds. 

There are approx. 12 places available and you can apply individually, or organisations may choose to nominate individuals, duos or trios to work together on a project to meet organisational priorities. We especially encourage applications for improvement projects that seek to sustain or implement changes that benefit the health and wellbeing of populations in northwest London. Patients, carers, members of public, health and care professionals (including early career researchers) are all encouraged to consider this opportunity.


Local authority, social care and third sector Involvement

As part of the NIHR’s commitment to support research and the development of health and care improvements in social care, local authority and third sector settings we are this year encouraging applications from individuals and organisations within these sectors. If you want to have a discussion about how the Improvement Leader Fellowship could benefit you or your organisations work, please feel free to get in contact and we can support you throughout the application process.

Further information

View and download associated documents:

*To download the files, click the 'File' option in the top left corner and select 'Download' from the drop-down menu.


Please also consult the guidance notes document. If you have any questions or wish to speak to someone regarding the Fellowship, email us at and we will be happy to help.

Get involved

Applications are to be submitted by email to by 4pm on 21 Februrary 2024.

If you need any help or support filling in your application or will struggle to complete and submit your application via email, please contact us on and we will assist you. NIHR ARC NWL are committed to widening access and we will support you in any way we can to help you engage with us.

If you are interested in the Fellowship we encourage you to join us at our next Collaborative Learning Event.

What our Fellows think...

“I joined the Improvement Leader Fellowship as a duo to undertake a project seeking to capture support services available for staff from ethnic minority backgrounds. I am incredibly thankful for the wealth of knowledge I have gained in quality improvement, leadership and most importantly, self-development strategies. Our programme coordinators have been highly engaging and I look forward to attending our monthly workshops together. Needless to say, we have formed invaluable relationships with fellow peers and our wonderful project/life mentor!”

 Rhia Kaur Saggu

Highly Specialist Macmillan Dietitian

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

“The most powerful lesson has been that connecting with people with shared passions 

and interests will always be worthwhile, even in this most difficult and unprecedented era.”

Tina Prendeville

Senior Research Midwife
Women’s Health Research Centre, Imperial College London and Imperial College Healthcare Trust

“[Our] journey was at all times supported by the NIHR ARC Improvement leadership facilitators. [The programme team] were experienced, knowledgeable, supportive, and understanding.  Especially as we were challenged by Covid. Many Fellows at different times were pulled away… for operational reasons, redeployment or family illness.”
Susan Barry
Consultant Midwife, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

"I was grateful for the NIHR ARC NWL team to give me this opportunity. The fellowship has helped me to find my confidence to be a decisive leader which was very important to manage this project. The fellowship has helped me to gain the trust of my team who worked with me on this project and make it possible. I was able to see their potential and was able to empower them to be the leader of their QI project."
Rupal Parikh
Advanced Physiotherapy Practitioner and Spinal Pathway Lead at the Musculoskeletal Service
and co-chair for the north central division Race Equality Network Forum at Central London Community Health NHS Trust

Associated Research Theme: 

This news story is related to our Collaborative Learning and Capacity Building Theme.