Please note that applications are now closed.

Health Data Research UK is delighted to be inviting applications from start-ups, technologists and innovators to present health data research innovation projects as 4-minute lightning talks at the next UK Health Data Research Alliance Symposium on 1 December 2020.

We are looking for lightning talks which capture high impact, innovative exemplars of recent applications of data-driven research and are providing new insights, that contribute to delivery of HDR UK’s mission: to unite the UK’s health data to enable discoveries that improve people’s lives. We welcome talks on using new technologies, finished products or products in development. These may include:

  • Technologies to develop devices, medicines, vaccines, procedures and systems designed to streamline healthcare operations, lower costs, enhance the quality of care and improve collection of health routine data.
  • Artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, voice search, chatbots and virtual reality (VR) applications for health.
  • Novel techniques for diagnostics, prevention and screening and monitoring patient health and well-being.
  • Wearables development and using data from wearables.

This is a fantastic opportunity to reach a broad audience from across the health data science community – including academia, healthcare and industry – as well as patient and public representatives.

Application process

To apply, you will need to complete the submission form, providing:

  • A technical abstract and lay summary of your case study (250 words)
  • A statement of why your work should be chosen to feature in a lightning talk at the UK Health Data Research Alliance Symposium (100 words)
  • A short description of your company and why you will make a difference to users and patients (100 words)

Please note that applications are now closed.


To be eligible you will need to meet the following criteria:

  • Early stage: you are an early or very early stage company
  • Ethics: you have assessed the ethical impact of your solution and want to benefit patient and society while complying to data privacy and regulations
  • Tech plan: you have the tech expertise, team and implementation plan

We will take a flexible and inclusive approach to this assessment. See our diversity policy.


Up to 4 abstracts will be selected by a panel of experts, whose decisions will be based on the criteria below. Selected speakers will be informed at least two weeks before the UK Health Data Research Alliance Symposium.

Selection Criteria

  • Scientific/technical quality and practical applications
  • Alignment and relevance to HDR UK’s mission
  • Evidence of recent impact e.g. contributing to improving healthcare and patient benefit

Selection committee

  • Peggy Barthes-Streit, Health Data Research UK
  • Paola Quattroni, Health Data Research UK
  • Margaret Grayson, PPIE Representative
  • Mark Avery, Gut Reaction – The Health Data Research Hub for Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Rosanna Fennessy, PPIE Representative
  • Maria Koufali, Managing Director, Research & Innovation, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

Lightning talk – on the day

The talks will be 4 minutes long with a maximum of four slides. Each talk will have one presenter. As the One Institute event will be entirely online, lightning talks will be delivered by Zoom. The audience will vote on the winning talk on the day, which will be announced at the end of the day.

Lightning Talk Prize

Attendees will vote live for the most thought-provoking lightning talk, and there will be a non-monetary prize for the winning talk.


Deadline for applications: 16:00 on 9 November 2020
Sift and panel selection: 10 November 2020
Notification of successful talks: By COB 12 November 2020
Slide deadline: 17:00 on 24 November 2020

Further information

If you have any questions, please email

Please note that applications are now closed.