Representatives for the STANDING Together team receiving the award

The University of Birmingham's STANDING Together Team have won a prestigious award at the 2023 Clinical Research Network West Midlands Awards, which took place late last year.

The annual awards, now in its eighth year, celebrates and recognises the achievements of those involved in delivering research across the region.

Our STANDING Together Team were announced as winners for the ‘Patient & Public Involvement and Engagement (PPIE) Award’, as a result of their outstanding commitment to involving patients and the public, particularly those from minority populations, in their research design and delivery.

In October 2023, the team, led by researchers at the University of Birmingham and University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust affiliated with the NIHR Birmingham Biomedical Research Centre, published a set of recommendations that ensure datasets for training and testing Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are inclusive and adequately represent the diversity of our populations.

These recommendations are the result of a two-year research study involving over 350 people from 58 countries, including patients, researchers, healthcare professionals, industry experts, and regulators.

Research fellow for the project, Dr Elinor Laws, said: “It's wonderful that the work of our STANDING Together PPIE committee has been recognised with this award. The STANDING Together project is grounded on the importance of diversity and inclusion in health data, and it was essential for us to ensure that diverse voices were heard as part of the project.

“We are proud to have built a respectful and inclusive PPIE community that have challenged our thinking and shaped the direction of the project at every stage. We would like to thank all of our PPIE committee members for their invaluable support and insights.”

The team attended the awards ceremony at the Grand Central in Wolverhampton on Friday 30 November, where they received their awards alongside fellow nominees, winners, and highly commended teams.