Research team

Carolyn McCrorie

Jonathan Benn


Why is this project important?

Considering safety culture in a digital world, we are looking at technologies that can facilitate learning from staff experiences of daily practice.

As patient-safety specialists, we are building an understanding of how this new breed of smart technology can help shape better safety cultures in the NHS.


What are we doing?

“Micronarratives” are fragments of stories or short descriptions of experience that carry some special meaning for the originator. Emerging technologies for micronarrative capture and feedback are finding applications within a range of domains and settings, including health services. Their potential to provide real-time intelligence on issues such as operational safety or organisational culture through an active human sensor network has not been systematically investigated.

We are investigating the role of micronarrative-based feedback systems to support patient safety in accident-and-emergency services, maternity services, and peri-operative services (i.e. all the activities around a surgical procedure, like admission, anaesthesia and recovery).


Patient and public involvement and engagement

We are collaborating with the PSTRC PPI&E infra-structure to disseminate early findings from our work across relevant patient and public forums. The implications of our findings to patient safety will be discussed during PPI&E workshops and we are seeking patient and public groups to provide input into local projects.


Outputs and Impact

The outputs from our three evaluative case studies will include local service reports for NHS partners, including local dissemination of findings as required; Academic publications as stand-alone case studies or combined with findings from the broader programme of research into micronarratives within peer reviewed publications and academic quality and safety forums; Activity and findings reported to NIHR as part of annual report for funding body for the PSTRC; Dissemination of findings from broader research stream via PSTRC dissemination networks and in collaboration with local NHS partners.


Contact for more information

If you have any questions about our Micronarratives research, please contact Carolyn McCrorie via email at