We pursue research excellence to advance knowledge, shape intellectual debate and deliver benefits beyond academia. Using our research to create impact is integral to the University’s Our Future strategic plan. Our mission is to deliver economic, social, cultural, health and wellbeing benefits for society and the environment.
University commitment to research impact
Researchers are expected to seek opportunities for their research to achieve impact where this is appropriate to the specific project. This might be economic, social, cultural or other impacts beyond academia, including research consultancy and commercialisation, in line with our commitments to, and strategies for, innovation, social responsibility, civic, creative and public engagement.
Plans for knowledge exchange and follow-on activities should be devised as part of research project planning and adjusted appropriately when new/unexpected opportunities arise. Research impact is enabled by our policies and infrastructure, including our specialist professional support teams. Impact is celebrated and rewarded, including through academic probation and promotion criteria. Events celebrating impact include our annual Distinguished Achievement Awards and Making a Difference Awards for social responsibility.
Support for research impact
Knowledge Exchange & Impact Officers provide support across the research lifecycle, including building impact into funding applications, advising on pathways to impact and recording evidence of impact. Local contacts can be found here:
We offer five research impact training modules, which are are available through the Training Catalogue. They are cross discipline and open to early career researchers (ECRs), mid and late-stage researchers and interested Professional Service Colleagues. Topics include:
- Introduction to research impact – what impact is (and isn’t) and key elements of impact planning and delivery;
- Planning for research impact – including in grant applications;
- Communicating your research – with a wide variety of groups and audiences;
- Working with external stakeholders to achieve research impact;
- Evidencing research impact.
Specialist professional teams across the institution support research impact, including;
- Business Engagement and Knowledge Exchange - supports partnership activity with external organisations across a number of mechanisms including collaborative research, consultancy, knowledge exchange, student projects and sharing facilities.
- Cultural Partners – help to bring research to diverse audiences
- Engagement@Manchester – support achieving impact through public engagement activities
- Innovation Factory – driving commercialisation of innovations and intellectual property
- International Team – for support working with international sponsors and stakeholders
- Masood Entrepreneurship Centre - a focal point for enterprise and entrepreneurship
- Policy@Manchester – supporting researchers to work with policy makers and influencers
- Promoting your research – with support from Communications and Marketing colleagues
- Translation Manchester - progressing translational research across Greater Manchester
- University Library – supporting researchers to maximise their use of Research Metrics
Significant funding supports impact activity, with internal schemes for translational research projects, as well as recurring calls from external funders. This includes flexible support from our UKRI Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) funding streams.
Recording research impact
As well as recording publications, projects and grant information, researchers can use Pure to capture details of other interactions, including knowledge exchange, engagement and impact.
For guidance on creating and recording impact records in Pure, including details on attaching documentation and evidence, see the Pure support website.
Information, templates and resources to support you with your PPIE either as a member of staff, student or Public Contributor (a member of the public involved and/or engaged with our research and teaching).
An online resource for academics and researchers, to access the tools and support needed to reach new audiences.
- UKRI research outcomes and impact – examples from across the Research Councils, Innovate UK and Research England, demonstrating how UKRI-funded research is delivering social, cultural, economic and knowledge impact.
- UKRI Good Research Resources Hub – policies, standards and guidance to support researchers, innovators and organisations. Includes guidance on public engagement and co-production in research.
- EPSRC Impact and Translation Toolkit - provides an accessible overview of some of the key barriers researchers may face when seeking to apply their research to solving and addressing challenges in human health and wellbeing.
- ESRC Impact toolkit for economic and social sciences for social science researchers applying for and receiving funding from the ESRC
- Better Evaluation and Evaluation Support Scotland – for resources to support impact evaluation
- Research impact at the UK Parliament – ways to engage with Parliament, How To guides, training and events
- National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement – support and resources for achieving impact from public engagement activities
- Altmetric Explorer - metrics and qualitative data including citations on Wikipedia and in public policy documents, discussions on research blogs and mainstream media coverage to give an indication of reach and influence of research.