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Find out about our research 

We believe that regulation should be used only when it is the most effective means of protecting the public. We asked, ‘what evidence is there that regulation works?’ We could not find the answer - little research had been done and so we began working with researchers and regulators to develop evidence-based regulation.

Our current interests in regulatory research include:

  • Researching the influence regulators have on the behaviour of people on their register
  • Understanding the inter-connection between workplaces and people’s behaviour
  • Promoting understanding of different approaches to regulation internationally
  • Developing a library of knowledge about regulation.

 The key themes and current topics we are focusing on include:


We found that, in many of the final fitness to practise panel decisions about practitioners we review (and then go on to appeal), dishonesty has not been properly taken into account. We decided to take a closer look at it and commissioned research.

Find out more from our dishonesty research papge

We believe that sexual misconduct by health professionals can seriously undermine the public's confidence and trust in them. 

Find out more on from our sexual misconduct page

We started looking at whether professional identity has any benefit on patient safety as part of our work researching what impact regulators have on those they regulate.

Find out more from our professional identity research page

Would you be willing to see a health practitioner who has crossed a boundary with a colleague?

Watch this short animation to find out more about what the participants in our focus groups thought about this when questioned about three scenarios (based on real-life fitness to practise cases).

Our research work in practice

Find out more about how the research work we do can contribute to improving regulation. Read this case study and find out the answer to the question 'Does crossing sexual boundaries with colleagues put patients at risk?'

Read our most recent research:

Find all our reports in the research section of our website

Watch our video

Watch Dr Simon Christmas explain some of the main findings from Sexual behaviours between health and care practitioners: where does the boundary lie? (to watch with captions press 'cc').