Role description

This is an exciting new opportunity for a talented individual to be the inaugural appointee to this new endowed Professorship to deliver research that will transform health care and services for the future palliative care and ageing populations. 

The post holder will play a pivotal role in the academic work of the Cicely Saunders Institute, leading applied health services and/or clinic research and education focused on palliative care and/or older people and/or multimorbidity and the interface between these.

​​​​​​​Underpinning this Laing Galazka Professorship are the objectives of the donor charities, The Kirby Laing Foundation and Cicely Saunders International, to prioritise research that reflects the national demographic of an increasingly ageing population, i.e. into the care and health services of older people needing palliative care. 
Palliative care consultation

The post-holder will 

  • lead a major contribution to the academic work of the Cicely Saunders Institute, by winning major quality research funding and conducting and publishing research at a world-leading level
  • deliver transformative clinically applied and health services research in palliative care that impacts relevant populations, care, practice and policy
  • work and foster collaboration with clinical and non-clinical colleagues and relevant partners across the Institute, Faculty, King’s and beyond, to develop and deliver this programme
  • nurture clinical and non-clinical researchers and students (including PhD, MSc and undergraduate students) to build the next generation of researchers and clinicians in this field. 

Clinically qualified applicants may seek an honorary or paid only consultant or equivalent status in an appropriate speciality (palliative medicine, palliative nursing, allied professionals or related fields).

Academic duties responsible to the Director of the Cicely Saunders Institute, King's College London

  • To actively participate in the teaching programmes at King's, including the teaching of undergraduate health care students, including medical students, as well as postgraduate taught programmes offered by the Cicely Saunders Institute and the Faculty (FNFNMPC), including developing and leading modules in the pioneering MSc in Palliative Care.  
  • To take a major part in the academic work of the Cicely Saunders Institute by leading and winning relevant major research funding.   
  • To lead and deliver research at an international and world-leading standard to be published in major academic journals that impacts relevant palliative care populations, care, practice and policy and addresses the concerns of the major populations of the future, is relevant to health care / clinical services and policy makers.  
  • To attract, supervise, co-supervise and nurture clinical and non-clinical early career researchers and students (including PhD and MSc students) to build the field for the future.   

Governance, audit, data protection and ethics

  • All staff are expected to take part in relevant audit and clinical governance activity, including audit of research activity, or if clinically qualified clinical audit, clinical guideline and protocol development and clinical risk management.  They are also expected to have the highest standards of adherence to data protection, ethical and research governance principles and practices and to instil and monitor these in their teams. They will be expected to produce evidence of their contribution in these areas as part of their annual appraisal.  


  • All academics in King's undergo an annual performance development review (PDR). For clinically qualified staff it is normal practice for the NHS Trust appraisal and King's PDR processes to be held together so that all aspects of the job are jointly reviewed. All consultants are required as a matter of Trust policy to undertake annual appraisal/job plan review.  


  • The post holder will be provided with office space and support in the excellent facilities within the Cicely Saunders Institute, the world’s first purpose-built Institute of Palliative Care and Rehabilitation, bringing researchers, clinical teams and education under one roof.  

Communication, networking, engagement and impact

  • Build relevant collaborative partnerships within the Institute, Partners, King's and external organisations, and relevant centres nationally and internationally, including funding bodies, to further the research programme; 

  • Contribute to the development of palliative care, nationally and internationally through their research and related engagement, impact and education;  

  • Communicate and collaborate with research and teaching staff within the Cicely Saunders Institute, across the Faculty and the College, and lead collaborative developments.  

  • Communicate and collaborate with patients, families, the public, policy makers and clinical colleagues and in research and teaching, and its relevance to care and policy.   

  • Disseminate research findings in traditional and innovative ways.   

  • Actively engage in Patient and Public Involvement, play a major role in contributing to the Institutes platforms for this, including online and face-to-face interactions, and inbed Patient and Public Involvement into all research projects.     

  • Forge new relationships with potential collaborators and leaders to benefit the work of the Institute, and King’s.  

  • If clinically qualified, communicate with clinicians regarding care of patients, and communicate with patients and families.  

  • Engage with the media, press, publicity, policy makers, practitioners and others to deliver impact of the research to the benefit of patients, families and society.    

  • Develop and address research questions and deliver on research grants and programmes.  

  • Work with clinical and non-clinical researchers in the Institute and across King’s, patients, families and others to improve the quality of the research, education and academic environment at King’s.  

  • If clinically qualified, to assist fellow clinicians in the evaluation of clinical problems.  

Service delivery

  • Contribute to the management, strategy and further development of the Cicely Saunders Institute, Faculty and other Health Faculties, King’s and King’s Health Partners (KHP). 

  •  Take on a leadership role in one or more of the Cicely Saunders Institute Executive Groups.  

  • If clinically qualified the post-holder may contribute to the training and support of doctors, nurses or other professionals in training and may be designated as the Educational Supervisor in the educational contracts for junior staff in their speciality. This will include academic clinical fellowships and clinical lectureships in the speciality and bidding for such posts. 

  • Comply with all relevant mandatory training.  

  • Contribute to the training of all staff employees as required.  

  • Contribute to audit, service delivery and development.  

  • Adhere to KCL, Faculty, Cicely Saunders Institute and Trust policies.  

  • Deliver own research programme, build and nurture a research team.  

  • Help to develop other researchers within Cicely Saunders Institute and other research divisions.  

Team work, teaching & learning support

  • To actively participate in teaching and examining at undergraduate and postgraduate level, in particular contributing to the MSc in Palliative Care at KCL, and developing, or leading modules, and supervising research students according to the individual’s expertise.  

  • To actively participate in the training, selection and examining of undergraduates.  

  • Comply with the training requirements of the London Deanery and the Royal College.  

  • To contribute to the induction and training of new staff and visiting researchers.