Interested in undertaking a PhD in implementation research?

24 Jun 2021

We are recruiting a PhD candidate to join our team at the School of Public Health, University College Cork, to investigate the process and impact of tailoring implementation strategies to support evidence-based interventions in healthcare. 

The PhD project will be supervised by Dr Sheena McHugh and funded through the HRB Research Leader Award. The candidate is expected to join the SPHERE programme ( in September 2021.

Summary of the project

There are constant calls for change and improvement in how healthcare is delivered. This PhD project will focus on the process and impact of tailoring implementation strategies to support delivery of evidence-based interventions for chronic disease management.

The project will involve:

  • Analysis of barriers to implementation using existing data sources, literature reviews and primary data collection.
  • Collaborative research processes engaging with health service stakeholders to select and tailor implementation strategies
  • Evaluation of implementation in health service settings
  • Working with our public-patient involvement panel (PPI) and the programme steering group comprising clinicians, researchers and high-level policy and practice partners
  • Dissemination activities including journal publication, conference presentations and knowledge exchange events

This PhD scholarship will support a candidate to learn about and develop the field of implementation science, preparing the candidate for future opportunities in academia or in policy or practice settings. Throughout the PhD, the candidate will have the opportunity to avail of interdisciplinary partnerships and a network of international experts in implementation science.

 Funding and support

  • Full-time PhD scholarship commencing in September 2021.
  • Stipend (€18,000 pa) (tax exempt)
  • EU Student fees. Note that fees only cover European PhD registration.
  • Participation in the HRB SPHeRE Programme, with parallel training and professional development supported by the HRB Research Leader Award.
  • Opportunities to engage in a national and an international placement, to gain exposure to relevant national health care settings and international best practice.
  • Funding for a laptop, study running costs, training, and research dissemination costs.

How to apply

To apply please send a cover letter (1 page) outlining your suitability for the scholarship and your CV by email to Dr Sheena McHugh (

The closing date for applications is Friday the 16th of July at 12 noon.


Recruitment process

Applications will be reviewed and shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview via Zoom on Tuesday the 3rd of August.


More information

Further information can be obtained by contacting Dr Sheena McHugh (

Read more about our research here.

Health Implementation Research Hub

School of Public Health, Western Gateway Building, T12 XF62,