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Working with industry

Last reviewed 
14 December 2015

AMRC charities work with industry to support the commercialisation of charity funded research, as well as in their patient information and advocacy roles.

Policy 
  • Many charities are looking to collaborate with industry to speed up the development and availability of new treatments, therapies and diagnostics.
  • Despite their diverse nature, charities and industry have unique strengths to bring to collaborations. AMRC is working with our members, the government and the human healthcare industry groups ABPI, BIA, OBN, EMIG, BIVDA and ABHI to find ways for charities and industry to working together more closely 
  • The landscape is changing - both in terms of type of research being undertaken and the policy environment in which it is being done.
Quality and standards 

Charities and industry increasingly recognise that working collaboratively can deliver benefits for patients . It’s on this basis that both the AMRC and National Voices with the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) are developing complementary guides to help both sectors understand  how best to work with each other.

AMRC’s guide – An Essential Partnership – is specific to the conduct of research collaborations, and aimed at charities interested in working with industry in this area. It recommends that where charities work with industry, they should ensure they maintain: 

  • independence
  • integrity
  • transparency

The guide being developed by the ABPI and National Voices will outline a set of principles that should guide interactions between the pharmaceutical industry, health charities and patient groups, as well as identifying practical considerations for partnerships in the broader collaborative context (not just research). It is intended for this to be published in early 2015.

Despite the different focus of these guides, both are aimed at promoting collaborative working in  open,  transparent  and ethical ways,  and we hope that they will complement each other.

Data and impact 

Charities work with industry in many ways:

  • Action on Hearing Loss's Translational Research Initiative for Hearing develops partnerships between industry, academics, investors to support innovative research.
  • JDRF has funded Kalvista, a spin-out company, to develop a novel approach for treating diabetic eye disease.
  • Charities are forming consortia to work with industry to identify existing projects (that may have been stalled, shelved or parked) and invest in them so that new potential treatments are tested in clinical trials and hopefully new drugs are launched.