Ala Szczepura


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    1971 …2023

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    Personal profile


    Ala Szczepura is Professor of Health Technology Assessment in the new Research Centre for Healthcare and Communities, Coventry University. Originally, a physical chemist specialising in heterogeneous catalysis, she has over thirty years’ experience of interdisciplinary health services research with specific interests in: health and care technology assessment; re-design and assessment of services; and addressing population diversity for cost-effective care.  

    She has published over 180 peer-reviewed scientific articles including in the areas of healthcare innovation, self-management, cancer, renal care, diabetes, ageing care and unobtrusive smart environments for independent living and, most recently, unconscious gender bias in medicine. Research grants won have totalled over £15m including projects funded by NIHR, Wellcome, MRC, ESRC, Innovate UK, the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office, Skills for Care, Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Industry.

    She has contributed significantly to the strategic development of healthcare research in the UK. Both through her secondment in the early 1990’s to establish the NHS Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme; as a member of the HTA Research Commissioning Board; and membership of funding panels for various national Research Bodies. She has a long-standing interest in the development of researchers, sitting on NIHR Award Panels at all levels (Post-Doctoral, Career Development & Senior Research Fellowships).

    She is a member of the Advisory Group for Warwick Evidence which undertakes Technology Assessment Reviews for NICE. Internationally, Professor Szczepura is also a founder member of the HTA International (HTAi) Special Interest Group on Patient & Citizen Involvement in HTA.

    Throughout her career she has been a strong supporter of the role of women. In 2018, she was winner of the 'Services to Medicine' category in the First English Women's Awards.

    To address population diversity, she established the ESRC-funded UK Centre for Evidence in Ethnicity, Health and Diversity specialist library jointly with De Montfort University, launched in the House of Commons and subsequently incorporated into NHS Evidence by NICE.

    She holds Honorary Chairs at Warwick University and the University of the West of England Bristol. 

    Research Interests

    Health technology assessment, emerging technological innovations, policy research

    Vision Statement

    My interests lie in the application of 'technology' to health and care. Technology is defined broadly as 'the application of new knowledge' - in healthcare it can include innovations to 'promote health, prevent and treat disease, and improve rehabilitation and long term care'. This might cover service reorganisation and quality improvement as well as new 'tech'. Technology assessment is similarly broad, including measuring the organisational impact and broader social and ethical implications of a new technology, as well as its effectiveness and cost-effectiveness.

    Finally, my work addresses the challenge of embedding a multidisciplinary research approach (working closely with scientists, clinicians, end-users, policy makers and technology developers) into evaluation of new and emerging health and social care technologies.

    Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
    • SDG 4 - Quality Education

    External positions

    Member Research Review Committee, Marie Curie Cancer Care Research

    1 Mar 2019 → …

    Member Research Foundation Advisory Group, Royal College of Occupational Therapists

    1 Mar 2019 → …

    Visiting Professor, University of the West of England

    9 Sept 201625 May 2025

    Visiting Professor, University of Warwick

    1 May 201631 Dec 2023

    Vice-Chair, Research Programme Funding Committee, Marie Curie Cancer Care Research

    28 Feb 20151 Mar 2019


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    • Harue Masaki

      Kim Bul (Host), Ala Szczepura (Host), Toshio Nomura (Host) & Martin Bollard (Host)

      4 Nov 2017 → …

      Activity: Hosting a visitorHosting an academic visitor