Bristol Neuroscience strategy

Our research focusses on a single aim: Brain Research for Better Lives

BN's mission:

  • To sustain and promote innovative, collaborative and interdisciplinary neuroscience research
  • To embrace diverse perspectives and foster our supportive culture of reproducible, inclusive and open neuroscience
  • To train and mentor next-generation team neuroscientists, fluent in multiscale methods and working fluidly across academia and the NHS 
  • To focus and accelerate translation through joint working with our network of industrial partners
  • To continue excellence in public engagement through education and open exchange

BN's vision:

  • To become a national flagship, serving the nation and the world by advancing understanding of brain mechanisms and functions
  • To lead open translation of frontier neuroscience into innovative treatments for central nervous system disorders and optimised brain health in society
A graphic representation of Bristol Neuroscience research areas demonstrating how they interact and overlap
BN is organised into five research Hubs which incorporate expertise in clinical and population health, psychology and behaviour, synaptic and circuit mechanisms, and computational theory and analysis

Our current objectives include:

  1. To address major challenges in the fields of Mental Health, Memory, Movement, Sleep & Neural Computation​
  2. Consolidate our ‘synapse to society’ remit, mapping from synaptic-resolution studies in theoretical models, cells and animals to population neuroscience studies in humans​​
  3. Liaise with all UoB Faculties, Schools and affiliated NHS Trusts to help retain and recruit talented neuroscientists​​
  4. Flag and support funding opportunities, offering feedback at all stages and levels of grant and fellowship application, with particular focus on supporting ECRs​​
  5. Coordinate a vibrant and inspiring portfolio of seminars and workshops​​
  6. Develop a framework for open and comprehensive sharing of neuroscience data​​
  7. Consolidate a sustainable funding model for the Bristol Neuroscience Festival​​
  8. Promote and contribute to EDI initiatives, including the British Neuroscience Association scholars programme​

Why is now the right time to invest in Bristol Neuroscience?

There is an increasing burden on health professionals and local and national governments to deliver and support growing demand for services by patients and carers facing neurological conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer's disease, and mental health challenges including depression and schizophrenia. 

  • Compromised brain health imposes a massive and growing burden on humanity​
  • Lifelong conditions create many challenges, with many patients facing a lack of effective treatment options
  • The brain health of young people and older people threatened by the current pandemic​ has been severely compromised with longer term effects yet to be determined
  • Understanding the brain remains the greatest intellectual challenge facing humankind

Identification and treatment can be improved through the use of a number of methods, for example:

  • Experimental and computational neuroscience methods are now able to decode the brain’s complexity
  • Bioinformatics enable molecular and cellular pathway analyses
  • Machine learning and data linkage enable patient stratification
  • Digital technologies allow collection and real-time analyses of “population neuroscience” data at scale and integration of neuroscience into psycho-social interventions

Meeting the challenge of understanding the brain

Bristol Neuroscience is fully committed to supporting our wider research community society and we are active in:

  • the recruitment process for new staff
  • seeking funding from charities; private donors; industry; and government funding bodies to accelerate translational research
  • encouraging multi- and cross-disciplinary holistic collaborations 
  • creating an innovative, agile network of research projects and researchers from across academia, health services, the public and industry

What does Bristol Neuroscience offer?

World-leading, integrated and complementary expertise in:​ 

  • frontier neuroscience, particularly​ synaptic mechanisms and physiology​ and in vivo systems neuroscience of neural circuits​
  • psychological science​
  • computational neuroscience & machine learning​
  • neurosurgery​
  • epidemiology & clinical cohorts​
  • patient & public involvement and co-production​

BN also offers:

  • an established and inclusive culture of common goals, collaboration and trust​
  • excellence in clinical and laboratory training and mentoring
  • longstanding and successful industrial collaboration and investment​
  • ​a national resource with international impact: a mature and extensive network of academic and industrial collaborators across UK, Europe, US and Asia​


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