Currently, health care professions need a sustainable research culture to underpin their practice and justify their effectiveness, safety and integration within the health care system. Unfortunately, there is a paucity in mature research culture across the chiropractic profession, largely due to deficiencies in research capacity and leadership. Based on  this need, a group of senior health researchers (Adams, Hartvigsen and Kawchuk) have therefore planned and founded the world-first international chiropractic research leadership initiative – the Chiropractic Academy of Research Leadership (CARL); aiming to develop research capacity and leadership within chiropractic.