Prof. Mary McCarron
Trinity lead, PPI Ignite Network
Prof Mary McCarron is the Director of the Trinity Centre for Ageing and Intellectual Disability, the Executive Director of the National Intellectual Disability Memory Service, Principal Investigator on IDS-TILDA (Intellectual Disability Supplement to The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing) and the Professor of Ageing and Intellectual Disability at Trinity College Dublin. She is recognised as a research leader and an international expert in the fields of intellectual disability & ageing, dementia, and end of life care. She has been elected a Fellow of the American Association of Nursing in recognition for her service to the field of nursing internationally and was the inaugural winner of the HRB Impact Award in 2019, acknowledging the influence her research output has had on improving the lives of people ageing with an intellectual disability.
Throughout her career, Prof McCarron has championed the involvement of people with an intellectual disability in all aspects of research. This reflects her broader view that people with an intellectual disability should be involved in all activities that can affect their quality of life, particularly as they age.
A sustained example of Prof McCarron’s commitment to involvement has been the Intellectual Disability Supplement to the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA), a ground-breaking longitudinal study which has maintained the involvement of people with intellectual disability, their carers and service providers. In 2018, IDS-TILDA was selected as the national exemplar of public involvement in research by the Horizon 2020-funded SPARKS Exhibition at Science Gallery Dublin. In 2017, IDS-TILDA was selected as a national exemplar of engaged research by Campus Engage at the launch of its report.
As the Principal Investigator on PPI Ignite, Prof McCarron has drawn upon her experience of involvement and her then position as the Dean of Health Sciences to champion PPI across health sciences and embed PPI within its strategies and systems, including Trinity’s Strategic Plan, its Research Strategy and Charter, the Faculty of Health Science research metrics and the University’s Research Support System. She is leading out on the Quality Improvement and Impact aspects of the national PPI Ignite Network.