The RCM is undertaking a research prioritisation project to establish the top 10 priorities for research and we want all members of our profession, together with student midwives, MSWs and service users to get involved. 

The project was launched on 17 July 2023 with an online webinar. Click here to watch the launch.


Establishing future research priorities for maternity and midwifery care, is a key objective in the RCM’s research-and-development-strategy-2021-2024.pdf (


The rationale behind having research priorities is to:

  • Influence funding bodies, such as the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) to fund more maternity research
  • Influence policy makers about gaps in evidence and the importance of maternity research
  • Build networks and support consensus within maternity healthcare
  • Support midwifery researchers to identify topics, including those applying to the RCM Wellbeing of Women award and the Jean Davies Iolanthe Trust award

Aims and objectives

The aim is to identify the future research priorities for maternity and midwifery care and disseminate widely.  This will be achieved by:

  • Working with The James Lind Alliance | James Lind Alliance ( (JLA) to establish a ‘top ten’ list of research priorities for maternity and midwifery care. We will work with midwives, student midwives, maternity support workers, women and birthing people during the project.
  • Publicising the results of the prioritisation exercise with RCM members, maternity professional organisations, women’s stakeholder groups, policy makers and funding bodies.


We will be following the JLA’s Priority Setting Partnership process and working with a JLA Advisor throughout the length of the project. There will be two surveys to gather responses about research priorities. The first survey will be open on 8 January 2024, which will invite a general open response to the priorities for research. The second survey will be open on 9 September 2024 and include a long list of priorities which have been developed from the first survey. There will be an in-person workshop in January 2025 to finalise the priorities, followed by the publication of a report in May 2025.

You are invited to register as an Interested Party at any time during the project. Registering means that you will be automatically sent the two online project surveys and the invitation to express your interest in attending the final project workshop.  

Click here to fill out our Expression of Interest form to register as an Interested Party. 

Opportunities to get involved

Please look out for our surveys from January 2024 and have your say in what you think the priorities should be for maternity and midwifery research.

Introducing the project team 

The project leads 

The RCM Research Advisors, Jenny Cunningham and Dr. Jude Field are leading this project.  

The project Review Group 

Professors Helen Cheyne [University of Stirling]; Vanora Hundley [Bournemouth University] and Julia Sanders [Cardiff University] are supporting the project.  

The project Steering Group 

Between 17 July and 6 August 2023, Expressions of Interest were invited for membership of the project Steering Group. Over 60 expressions of interest were received.  

Introducing our Project Partners 

Organisations are invited to register as Project Partners throughout the life of the project. Registering means that an organisation agrees to: 

  • Provide an organisation logo to be included on the RCM project website and in resulting publications 
  • To promote the project within in their networks, including dissemination of the two online surveys and the expression of interest to attend the final project workshop 

The opportunity to attend non-compulsory occasional online meetings, piloting the two online surveys amongst their staff and/or membership and to share the project poster electronically on relevant social media or in hard copy in their organisation locations 

Click here to fill out our Expression of Interest form to join our Project Partners: 

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