How your money helps
Homeopathy has been used worldwide for over 200 years to treat both acute and chronic medical conditions, yet homeopathy research is a relatively new field. This means that we have a gap between what we know from the experiences reported by patients and practitioners and what we can ‘prove’ scientifically.
From what we know so far, the evidence suggests that homeopathy could provide solutions to many of the challenges facing us today – from overuse of antibiotics to spiralling healthcare budgets – but to know for sure, we need more hard data. With your help, we can carry out the research needed to determine the precise role homeopathy could and should play in the healthcare systems of the future.
Conducting high quality research is expensive, with a single large-scale clinical trial costing upwards of £500k. Specialised funding bodies (e.g. UK Research Councils and International Research Foundations) are in a position to provide the large amounts required, but need an initial demonstration of the potential value of a new treatment before committing funds.
This leaves many potential researchers in a ‘Catch 22’’ situation and is where HRI can come in to really make a difference. We use our funds to support smaller-scale but high quality projects, to the point where preliminary results can be published. At this stage, more extensive funding can then be sought from the specialised funding bodies.
There is a great deal of misinformation about homeopathy in the mainstream media (as well as in academic journals), with incorrect statements such as ‘there is no scientific evidence homeopathy works’ being widely repeated. HRI considers its role in providing objective, academically sound information about homeopathy research to be vital in redressing the balance.
With your help we can continue to provide information to decision-makers, journalists, colleagues and the public whenever needed, as well as developing ever-better web-based resources for use around the world.
Many people find academic research a bit boring or simply unintelligible! HRI is committed to getting creative and finding new ways to bring complex scientific information to a new audience, in a way that is easy to understand, but still of the highest academic quality. Our quarterly research articles bring you the latest science stories in a maximum of 1000 words of plain English; on our website, You Tube and social media channels we have an ongoing programme of filmed talks and interviews with leading experts in homeopathy research from around the world, sharing their insights and experience in manageable bite-sized pieces.
As well as funding research projects, HRI provides financial support to MSc and PhD students. This offers a high return on investment, as the cost of the research generated by the student is far lower than if the funds were used to pay a qualified researcher directly. This comes at no cost in terms of quality, as students are supervised by leaders in the field on staff at the Universities. Furthermore, there is the long-term impact of adding to the pool of well-trained researchers in this specialist field.
HRI is currently funding two PhDs at the University of Sheffield, carrying out research into the role of homeopathy in treating depression and ADHD. With your help we can build a stronger research community.