Joint UNIversities Pandemic and Epidemiological Research


JUNIPER (Joint UNIversities Pandemic and Epidemiological Research) is a collaborative network of researchers from institutions across the UK who develop mathematical and statistical models to better understand the dynamics and control of infectious diseases. Founded during the COVID-19 pandemic to connect many smaller epidemic modelling research groups across the UK into a cohesive network, JUNIPER provided coordinated and timely mathematical modelling to support UK government pandemic response. Post-pandemic, JUNIPER continues to grow through linking researchers at all career stages into the larger partnership of epidemic modellers allowing them to share experience, knowledge, contacts and ideas. We believe that by connecting epidemic modelling researchers to form a supportive nationwide network is critical to strengthen and develop world-leading epidemic modelling capacity in the UK to ensure we are better prepared and more resilient to future disease threats.

Our research covers a range of infectious diseases that are important regionally, nationally and internationally, as well as supporting underpinning research for strengthening infectious disease modelling. Topics that researchers in our partnership are currently working on include: climate change and infectious diseases, behavioural science, interventions, vulnerable settings, education settings, spatial dynamics, statistical methods and pandemic preparedness.

Our key aims are:

  • To build an inter-university community of epidemiology modellers working at the interface of infectious disease control & public health policy.
  • To provide support & training to the future leaders of epidemic modelling in academic research & scientific advice to the UK government.
  • To be outward facing to the wider research community & general public​.

Developing an inclusive, supportive and positive research culture is very important to JUNIPER. We believe this is critical to ensure we are properly supporting the future generation of epidemic modellers. Research culture is also important to build trusted and meaningful collaborations across disciplines and with policy makers. JUNIPER embeds its scientific activities within an open and collaborative framework, including considerable public outreach through our collaboration with Plus Magazine <Link to plus page>. We also aim to be outward-facing and inclusive of the wider academic community through our seminars and research meetings.

We are funded by MRC.