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Public Involvement in Research Impact Toolkit (PIRIT)

Public Involvement in Research Impact Toolkit

Public involvement positively shapes research. By sharing their time and personal experiences with researchers, members of the public can influence what research takes place, how it’s carried out, and how the results are shared.

The UK Standards for Public Involvement are guidelines designed to help improve the quality and consistency of public involvement in research.

They highlight the need to assess ‘[…] the changes, benefits and learning gained from the insights and experiences of patients, carers and the public.’  Yet, there is a recognised gap in pragmatic tools to support impact planning and reporting against the standards.


PIRIT is a set of pragmatic tools which aim to support researchers working with public contributors to:

  • plan and integrate public involvement in research
  • track public contributions and the difference they make to the research
  • report impact against the UK Standards for Public Involvement.

The PIRIT Planning Tool is a checklist of potential public involvement related activities and relevant standards. The format follows the research pathway.

The PIRIT Tracking Tool is a simple spreadsheet to record when and how the public contributed, what they hoped to influence, what changed (if anything), why it matters, and the related standards.

These tools can be used separately or together, and in conjunction with other published public involvement assessment frameworks and reporting tools.

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Who's it for

PIRIT was co-developed by public contributors and staff members for use at the Marie Curie Research Centre and the Wales Cancer Research Centre. The tools are designed to be co-owned by researchers and public contributors to encourage discussion, collaboration, and a transparent approach to public involvement planning and impact reporting. PIRIT’s value and relevance were confirmed through in-house testing. Due to considerable interest from the research community, we have made the toolkit freely accessible for wider use under certain conditions.

How to use it

You can download PIRIT and start using it today, free of charge. It’s designed to be adaptable under certain conditions  Information on licence conditions, plus hints and tips on how to use the tools are included in the toolkit.

Complete online form and download PIRIT

When downloading the toolkit, you will be asked for some basic information to help us understand PIRIT user characteristics. If you are happy to supply contact details, we will use them to keep you informed of opportunities to give feedback on PIRIT use, and of updated versions if/when they are published.

Get in touch

If you have any questions, are interested in collaboration, or have feedback on the PIRIT web page please contact us.

Marie Curie PPI