Structure and key people
Today the National Heart and Lung Institute (NHLI) is led by Professor Sian Harding and is based at sites on the Royal Brompton, Harefield, Hammersmith, St Mary’s and South Kensington campuses. The NHLI maintains close links to the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, which was awarded two Biomedical Research Units (Cardiovascular and Respiratory) by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR), and the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, home to the largest NIHR Biomedical Research Centre in the UK. Together these comprise the Academic Health Sciences System (AHSS).
According to the Rand analysis (2004 to 2013) Imperial is the top university in the UK in three specialities: respiratory, cardiovascular and gastroenterological, in that order. If we look specifically at the highly cited papers, Imperial College is ranked first in three areas, which importantly for NHLI include respiratory disease (13.6% of the total) and cardiovascular disease (8.8%) and these figures significantly increase when the Royal Brompton and Imperial College Health Trusts, where a significant number of NHLI associates are based, are included.
The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is used to measure the quality of research in UK higher education institutions and is carried out every five years, with the last taking place in 2014. NHLI scored highly in REF 2014 to maintain its reputation as one of the top research institutions.
Accordion widget - REF
Results of REF 2014
In the latest Research Excellence Framework, conducted in 2014, NHLI staff mainly fell under the grouping Clinical Medicine (or 'Unit of Assessment (UoA) 1') for study. According to the Times Higher Educational Supplement (see ‘REF 2014: Results by subject’ analysis on the THES website), Clinical Medicine at Imperial College was ranked:
- 2nd of all UK institutions by ‘research power’ (a combined measure of volume and quality within a UoA submission)
- 3rd when looking at the percentage of 4* quality research activity
- 4th by Grade Point Average (GPA).
Within NHLI there was an extremely high return rate (98%) for academic staff and a significant number of early career researchers were also included. As part of the REF process, the Institute also demonstrated its strong capabilities in delivering impact from its research: as part of the College’s REF 2014 submission 11 impact case studies were generated from work undertaken by NHLI. Clinical Medicine at Imperial was ranked 3rd in the UK for impact of its research when ranked both by percentage of 4* quality activity in Impact or by Impact GPA (source: THES).
|Cat A||Category A staff: Academic staff in post on 31 October 2013 who were selected for submission into the REF|
|FTE||Full Time Equivalent|
|4*||Quality that is world-leading in terms of originality, significance and rigour|
|3*||Quality that is internationally excellent in terms of originality, significance and rigour but which falls short of the highest standards of excellence|
|2*||Quality that is recognised internationally in terms of originality, significance and rigour|
|1*||Quality that is recognised nationally in terms of originality, significance and rigour|
|Unclassified||Quality that falls below the standard of nationally recognised work. Or work which does not meet the published definition of research for the purposes of assessment|
For more information on Imperial College London’s performance in the Research Excellence Framework please see the College’s information pages on REF 2014
NHLI is structured into 5 Divisions which encompass research and education across cardiovascular and respiratory sciences.
Diagram of NHLI's research structure
Diagram of NHLI's divisional structure
Download the NHLI research structure (PDF)
Key people in the NHLI
Professor Sian Harding
Sian Harding is the Interim Head of NHLI and Professor of Cardiac Pharmacology. Sian is head of the Cardiovascular Science Division, as well as Institute Lead for Women for Athena Swan, and a co-investigator within the UKRMP Immunomodulation Hub. She is also head of the BHF Centre for Regenerative Medicine.
Professor Clare Lloyd
Clare Lloyd is the head of the Respiratory Sciences Division at NHLI and Vice-Dean (Institutional Affairs) for the Faculty of Medicine. Clare is a PI in the Medical Research Council/Asthma UK Centre in Allergic Mechanisms of Asthma and has served on the research committees of Asthma UK and the British Heart & Lung Foundation.