About us

ARRC is a specialist resource for acupuncture research information; the only such resource in the UK. It is funded by the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) www.acupuncture.org.uk. It was established in 1994 by the BAcC in partnership with the Foundation for Research in Traditional Chinese Medicine http://www.frtcm.org/, a research charity.


ARRC’s central aim is to serve registered acupuncturists and others by providing good quality information on research into acupuncture. Thus it supports practice and promotes further research. ARRC also aims to increase awareness of the role and effectiveness of acupuncture and hence help in getting wider acceptance for the use of acupuncture within our health system.

Specific activities and services

  • Provision of acupuncture research information for practitioners, students, NHS workers, journalists, government bodies, the general public and others. This may include references and abstracts derived from electronic databases, copies of papers or information about where these are available, relevant unpublished material, and expert summary, commentary and interpretation.
  • Technical advice and support for practitioners embarking on research projects.
  • Development of research ideas and methods appropriate for traditional acupuncture
  • Facilitation of networking between practitioners and researchers
  • Production of our own review papers [LINK to Fact Sheets and Briefing Papers] on various subjects.
  • Organisation of annual acupuncture research symposia. [link to symposium section]


The coordinator/director is Mark Bovey MSc MBAcC. He has been an acupuncture practitioner since 1983 and on the faculty of a UK acupuncture teaching institution since 1996. He took the ARRC job on 1998 and has been on the BAcC’s Research Committee since 2000, becoming the Research Manager in 2011. He has been co-investigator in several research projects, organized and participated in acupuncture research workshops and is the author of articles published in a wide range of books and journals.

Mark Bovey
Mark Bovey


1994 Founded in York. Began to compile a database of acupuncture research material
1996 First ARRC symposium
1997 Paper about ARRC presented at US conference
1998 First Briefing Papers (evidence summaries on medical conditions) produced
Moved to Exeter University as part of Centre for Complementary Health Studies
2002 Moved to Thames Valley University as part of Centre for Integrated Healthcare
2005 Archived own database; subsequently uses public and commercially available databases
2006 10th symposium
2009 Began producing Fact Sheets (more concise evidence-based summaries)
2011 Moved to BAcC headquarters
2012 First ARRC symposium in partnership with the Acupuncture Association for Chartered Physiotherapists http://www.aacp.org.uk/
2013 Symposium partners extended to Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine www.atcm.co.uk and Register for Chinese Herbal Medicine www.rchm.co.uk


Gould AJ. Review and description of ARRCBASE: A bibliographic database of acupuncture practice and research. Complementary Therapies in Medicine 1997;5(3):168-171
Bovey M, Ward T. Patterns of demand and supply for an acupuncture research information service. Focus on Alternative and Complementary Therapies 2003;8(4):476-558. Click here to view presentation.