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Sponsorship and Peer Review


All research projects require a sponsor. Sponsorship is separate from funding and relates to indemnity. The sponsor confirms the project has been adequately peer reviewed and the organisation agrees to indemnify the methodology and conduct of the study. Proof of sponsorship is required when applying for approvals. Your research facilitator will work with you to get sponsorship from King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, King’s College London or another institution. Sponsorship Guidance explains the process in more detail.

A sponsor can be:

  • any organisation which funds, initiates or hosts research, or employs staff involved in research
  • the substantive employer of the chief investigator or the institution that is supplying a qualification in the instance of student research, when it is non-commercial research
  • a charity
  • a company, when it is a commercial trial

The sponsor takes on the legal responsibility for the initiation and management of the research. Responsibilities include ensuring that:

  • the resources are adequate to allow the collection, analysis, and protection of high quality research data
  • the project is scientifically sound
  • Indemnities are in place to cover those who are conducting or participating in the research.

Peer review

A peer review constitutes a form of self-regulation and is employed to maintain standards of quality, improve performance and provide credibility. The goal is to verify whether the approach taken will address the research question and to provide suggestions for improvements. Internal peer review procedures explains the process in more detail.

It is a requirement of sponsorship and must be conducted before you apply. If you are setting up and funding your own study then you may need your department to undertake peer review. There are a number of Research Governance Meetings within the Trust that encompass peer review and feasibility. Please contact the Research Office for information.