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The University of Southampton
NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre

Dr Ksenia Crane B.Sc., Ph.D.

Research Fellow in Research on Research, NETSCC

Dr Ksenia Crane's photo

I am a Research Fellow for the Research on Research (RoR) programme at the Wessex Institute, which is contracted through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Evaluations and Trials Coordinating Centre (NETSCC).

I joined the RoR team in October 2019. My role as Research Fellow is to conduct rigorous qualitative and mixed-methods research on topics surrounding the ‘science of science’ – aimed to inform the NIHR on the current efficacy of (or any need of improvements in) practices and policies relevant to health research design, funding and management in the UK. The current RoR research themes are:

  1. Peer Review and Decision-Making
  2. Post-Award Management of Funding Research

Prior to joining NETSCC, I was a Senior Research Fellow in Neurodegeneration, based at the University’s Biological Sciences department. Funded by Alzheimer’s Society and Rosetrees Trust (along with equipment grants from Alzheimer’s Research UK), my research aimed to use live human models to uncover early mechanisms related to neuronal calcium dyshomeostasis in Alzheimer’s disease. As a cutting-edge experimental method of enabling better translation of disease mechanisms and potential drug targets to clinical practice, my project replaced the use of animals with live human brain tissues obtained (ethically and with informed consent) from patients undergoing neurosurgery at the University Hospital and Alzheimer’s patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells. This work carried on from findings I obtained during my PhD in Neuroscience.

Aside from my experience in academic research, I also bring valuable experience of working as a freelance scientific editor and reviewer. This role involves conducting stylistic editing (spelling, grammar and scientific language) and critical content reviews of post-graduate theses (PhD, MSc, BSc) in various scientific disciplines, as well as journal manuscripts in the field of Neurology.

Outside of work, I lead a busy (and slightly crazy) lifestyle that involves two Labradors, two cats, two chameleons, kids, yoga and travel!


Appointments held:

Research interests

My professional passions are research design, critical analysis and editing. Conducting research as a member of the RoR team allows me to harness these passions into improving understanding of and implementing changes (where needed) in areas of health research practice that are of particular importance to me – such as peer review. My previous experience as both a peer reviewer and an applicant on research grants in academia has given me unique early-career insight into the current question of whether this method of deciding research funding is efficacious, transparent and fair – one which our team aims to help answer. I am also interested in streamlining other aspects of research grant funding (such as the application process), and my research interests will no doubt develop as new research themes emerge in the RoR team.

Other NIHR missions that are of interest to me relate to improving the management of/research in old age and mental health.

Research group

Primary Care, Population Sciences and Medical Education

Affiliate research group

Research on Research

Dr Ksenia Crane
NETSCC, University of Southampton, Beta House, Enterprise Road, Southampton, SO16 7NS

Room Number : Chilwth Beta

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