top of page

Participation, Engagement and Involvement

What's the difference between them?

Confused about the difference between Participation, Engagement and Involvement? More information can be found on the Involve website 

Participation by patients and the public

Patient and Public Participation – where people take part in a research study


Examples of participation are:

  • People being recruited to a clinical trial or other research study to take part in the research

  • Completing a questionnaire or participating in a focus group as part of a research study


Examples of participation in the CLIMB project

  • More patients able to sign up for the research database through awareness and easier use

  • Expansion of CamCOPS (electronic data capture tools e.g. electronic psychiatric tests and assessments), making participation in studies easier and less time consuming

  • Participation to validate the CamCOPS tools

  • Development of the Mood and Joint Immunopsychiatry (MOJO) study: A study of inflammation and depression in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis or Sjogren’s syndrome

  • Allowing participants' data from previous studies to be linked to the research database

Engagement with patients and the public

Patient and Public Engagement – where information and knowledge about research is provided and disseminated


Examples of engagement are:

  • Science festivals open to the public with debates and discussions.

  • Research open days at a research Centre where members of the public are invited to find out about research

  • Raising awareness of research through media such as television programs, newspapers and social media

  • Dissemination to research participants, colleagues or members of the public on the findings of a study


Examples of engagement in the CLIMB project

  • Stand and poster at Brainworks: An open evening for the public hosted by NIHR Cambridge BRC

  • Presentation at the Service user and carer research network meeting ‘using data in mental health research’

  • Presentation on mental health data at the CPFT research nurse’s supervision meeting

  • Engagement with clinicians and nurses working in mental health research

Involvement of patients and the public

Patient and Public Involvement – where members of the public are actively involved in research projects and in research organisations.


Examples of involvement are:

  • As joint grant holders or co-applicants on a research project

  • Involvement in identifying research priorities

  • Commenting on and developing patient information leaflets or other research materials

  • Undertaking interviews with research participants

  • Joining a research advisory group

  • User and/or carer researchers carrying out the research


Examples of involvement in the CLIMB project

  • Set up of a CLIMB project research advisory group (RAG)

  • Enabling patient led research – project in process

  • Assisting the MOJO study team with document reviews and project oversight

  • Making it easier to ask research questions by the ongoing development of data visualisation tools in the research database

  • Involvement by Service users and carers in the research database oversight committee

  • Focus group on data sharing (in set up)

bottom of page