Category: Impact

Scaling what works doesn’t work: we need to scale impact instead

Scaling has become a buzzword in international development, where the received wisdom is to ‘scale what works’. However, whilst this is a paradigm that suits private investment in international development and science more broadly, complex problems require nuanced solutions. Robert Mclean, John Gargani and Dena Lomofsky, argue that a new conception of scaling – scaling … Continued

From Impact to Inequality: How Post-COVID-19 government policy is privatising research innovation

Post-COVID-19 government policy has included an increase in investment in the UK’s research sector. However, Daniel Hook finds that the emphasis on the impact of this research means that longer-term, less measurable, blue skies research is being pushed into the private sector. Not only is blue skies research the key driver of technological change, but … Continued

From Impact to Inequality: How Post-COVID-19 government policy is privatising research innovation

Post-COVID-19 government policy has included an increase in investment in the UK’s research sector. However, Daniel Hook finds that the emphasis on the impact of this research means that longer-term, less measurable, blue skies research is being pushed into the private sector. Not only is blue skies research the key driver of technological change, but … Continued

Assessing research impact – a tale of 7 impact studies

How to assess research impact? Sarah Morton draws on her own experience of assessing impact arguing that despite diverse topics, settings and countries, there are patterns of successful impact that can help move our learning forward. She outlines her five top lessons for designing and evaluating impact in a research project.    I am not … Continued

How can anthropological research impact the populations it studies? Six steps for creating inclusivity and accessibility with ethnographic monographs

The ethnographic monograph is the primary medium for communicating anthropological research. However, they have traditionally only been read mainly by anthropologists in metropolitan universities. Professor Daniel Miller highlights the problem for anthropologists who want their research to have an impact that contributes directly to education benefitting the populations being studied. Drawing on the experience of … Continued

Unfunded research: Why academics do it and its unvalued contribution to the impact agenda

Unfunded research takes time and money for already stretched academics. Yet it makes up over a quarter of all research carried out in British universities. Professor Rosalind Edwards has spoken to academics about why they do unfunded research and argues that universities need to revalue this work in light of the significant contribution it makes … Continued

Social science spinouts a neglected pathway to impact?

The abstract nature of knowledge derived from the social sciences has often led to it being written off as common sense, or as being ill-suited to practical application. In this post, Chris Fellingham, argues that creating businesses and social ventures based on social science insights presents bold, new opportunities for social science research to deliver … Continued

To build a better world after COVID-19, now is the time to transform how we think about social science commercialisation

As the world emerges from the COVID-19 lockdown many opportunities have arisen to rethink how and for whom our societies operate. In this post, Julia Black argues that social sciences can play a unique role in the post-COVID-19 recovery by forging new relationships with business and commerce and outlines how initiatives, such as the Aspect … Continued

To achieve visible impacts Horizon Europe must connect to local innovation dynamics

The European Commission aims to use the new Framework Programme for research and innovation – Horizon Europe – to demonstrate to a greater extent than previously that public investments in research and innovation result in real benefits for society. Drawing on research from the Rathenau Instituut, Laurens Hessels, Sue-Yen Tjong Tjin Tai, Julia Jansen and … Continued