Opportunities - Partners and Researchers in Health Research

Partners and Researchers in Health Research

University of Eastern Finland



The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) defines patient-oriented research (POR) as a “continuum of research that engages patients as partners, focusses on patient-identified priorities and improves patient outcomes. This research, conducted by multidisciplinary teams in partnership with relevant stakeholders, aims to apply the knowledge generated to improve healthcare systems policies and practices” (2014).

The vision of health care requires a change in priorities for research practices from traditional clinical research that considers patients as passive recipients of health care to research practices that center patient’s voices, bodies and experiences and that conceptualize patients as proactive and engaged agentic actors in processes of knowledge construction in healthcare. The collaboration between researchers and patient partners is one of the most crucial aspects of POR. However, our understanding of POR tends to be informed by quantitative studies that tell us a lot about general trends and patterns, but lacks more qualitative, granular and in-depth explorations of how researchers and patient partners engaged in POR make sense of their collaboration, what assumptions and understandings about health research they have, how do those pre-conceived ideas affect research practices and change throughout the process and what type of  transformative ‘aha moments’ can occur during the collaboration.

The goal of this study is to gain a deeper understanding of collaborative dynamics in POR in order to provide patient-informed insights and guidelines on how to strengthen and improve them.


Roles and Responsibilities

We are looking for 3-4 patient partners with varying degrees of health research experience (from those just starting their patient partner journey to those who have engaged on several to many projects) to join a Patient Partner Advisory Group that will inform our study. This group will provide direction and feedback on how to meaningfully include patient partner and researcher voices, perspectives, experiences and insights into the study.

Patient Partner Advisory Group members will contribute to the study in one or all of the following ways:

  • by providing feedback on the aims of the study, the research question(s) and their relevancy for patients; and
  • by suggesting and supporting modes of data collection, data analysis, writing up of research results and dissemination.


Time Commitment

The study is anticipated to start in April 2021 and last until early 2022.

The meetings of the Patient Partner Advisory Group will take place in April 2021. We are anticipating 2 meetings lasting 2 hours each.

Due to COVID 19 restrictions, the meetings will take place virtually.



Compensation is being offered for the patient partner role.

There are no travel expenses associated with this opportunity as all meetings will be held virtually.


For more information or to apply, please connect with

Caterina Bettin                                                          Païvi Eriksson

cbettin@uef.fi                                                            paivi.eriksson@uef.fi