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Expressions of Interest: Arthritis Research Ambassadors

Expressions of Interest: CIHR Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis Research Ambassadors

Three people standing togetherThe Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR – IMHA), is seeking applications to fill four vacancies in the CIHR – IMHA Research Ambassadors group. We specifically need representation from young adults, men, vulnerable populations, and representation of disease groups falling under our research mandate including conditions affecting bone, connective tissue, joint, muscle, oral health and skin.

WHO: Research Ambassadors are members of the public who live with, or advocate for others living with a condition that falls under CIHR – IMHA’s research mandate (conditions related to bones, joints, muscles, connective tissue, skin and teeth). Research Ambassadors bridge the gap between researchers and patients, addressing the different stages of the research process known as: Basic Biomedical Science, Clinical Science and Knowledge, and Clinical Practice and Health Decision Making.

WHAT: The main principles of what Research Ambassadors do are:

  1. Encourage transparency/partnership between researchers and patients/patient advocates
  2. Ensure relevancy of research
  3. Represent stakeholder diversity
  4. Maintain accountability through open communication

Key responsibilities of Research Ambassadors include:

  1. Sharing knowledge about research with the public with sensitivity to diverse populations;
  2. Contributing new perspectives and opinions, while hearing differing points of view with respect;
  3. Attending two meetings per year in person to share news of group and stakeholder activities;
  4. Reviewing plain language abstracts for the Research Ambassadors Knowledge Translation Award;
  5. Reviewing documents and contributing to discussions regarding new initiatives or projects of the Institute when it requests patient or patient advocate participation and engagement.

Candidates should have:

  • Basic understanding of different types of research
  • Agreement with the importance of patient participation in the research process
  • Ability to commit time and energy to the group
  • Interest in learning about CIHR – IMHA
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and respectfully in and with a group
  • Ability and confidence to share new ideas with other patients, patient advocates, health care professionals and researchers
  • Willingness to learn about and respect all areas of CIHR – IMHA’s research mandate
  • Demonstrated willingness to take active part in discussions and complete tasks assigned

Time Commitment:
The Research Ambassadors meet twice a year, fall and spring. Expected time commitment is up to 7 days per year including meeting-related work to do at home, travelling, and attending meetings. Two upcoming meetings will be in October, 2016, and April, 2017.

Remuneration and Expenses:
Members are not compensated for their service, however, travel and accommodation expenses are reimbursed in accordance with the Government of Canada Treasury Board Guidelines.

The deadline for applications is August 26, 2016. The appointments will start in September, 2016.

How to Apply
Interested individuals are invited to submit the following documents for consideration:

  1. A letter of interest mentioning background, interest areas, relevant related experiences, and sharing points of view and ideas that they would bring to the work of the CIHR – IMHA Research Ambassadors;
  2. Names, phone numbers and email addresses of two references;
  3. A resume (showing past work and life activities).

Documents should be emailed with the subject heading “Research Ambassadors” to: IMHA@umanitoba.ca.