How we engage the public

We believe that if the public – by which we mean individuals, communities and society – are actively involved in our work, then Wellcome will be more likely to succeed in its mission and will become even more accountable.  

We focus on people, helping everyone play their own role in improving health.

Why it's important 

The public engagement we support:

  • Empowers people – helping them access, use, respond to, and create health research and innovation
  • Creates people-centred health research – improving our understanding of people’s experiences and how we use that knowledge to improve Wellcome’s work
  • Helps society value our work – bridging the gaps between Wellcome and society so that research and innovation are trustworthy and valued by people, whether or not we work with them.

What we're doing 

We develop and support the best ways of bringing science and health research closer to the society in which it operates. 

To make this happen, we’re investing in and partnering with people, organisations and projects around the world: 

  • we develop partnerships that support a wide range of people to explore, create and debate science and health research
  • we develop the evidence base for public engagement, and support networks and organisations to measure outcomes and share expertise
  • we develop leaders in public engagement, from a wide range of perspectives and backgrounds
  • we lead change to embed public engagement in research
  • we encourage a diverse range of organisations to integrate science and research in their work. 

Who we support 

The people, projects and places we support range from social enterprises and community engagement networks to Nobel Prize winners and national galleries.

These include:

We also run Wellcome Collection, a free museum and library exploring health and human experience.

We want our work to reach as many people as possible, especially people we haven’t yet talked to. We prioritise projects for audiences who have few opportunities to engage with research. 

Read more about the projects we’ve funded.

Public engagement for researchers 

We want the researchers and organisations we fund to talk to the public about their work.

To help, we offer support for scientists and academics who want to engage the public with their research.

Latest news 

More news

Read more articles on public engagement.


Report10 February 2021 

This study explores the role, benefits and potential of young people’s involvement in health research, with a focus on mental health, infectious diseases and global heating.

[Summary] The world’s largest study into how people around the world think and feel about science and major health challenges.
[Summary] This report presents the results from the fourth wave of the Wellcome Monitor, a study about public knowledge of and attitudes towards science and health research.