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Impact Strategy

Our priority areas for impact are:

  • Informing and shaping policy agendas of UK and overseas governments;
  • Influencing international policy communities, international organisations, and non-governmental organisations;
  • Enhancing national and international media and public debate;
  • Challenging conventional wisdom and campaigning for social change globally.

Key topics and themes

Each of our research clusters and centres has the potential to form an ‘impact cloud’ that will address one or more of the priority areas (1) to (4) above. Our vision of the ‘cloud’ is one that acknowledges that impact is constantly in formation and connects different individuals, research groups, externally funded projects, and substantive themes.

So far we have identified 7 impact clouds: 

  1. Global Reordering: Evolution through European Networks – based on a major €10M EU FP7 funded project on the EU in a multi-polar world (2011-15).
  2. Gender, work, and everyday global political economy – an emerging theme across our IPE/IRS clusters.
  3. Intelligence, secrecy, and freedom of information – builds on a REF2014 impact case study.
  4. Politics of security, threat, and resilience – a new theme based on a range of ESRC funded research in our IRS cluster.
  5. Rethinking the market – based on an ESRC Professorial Fellowship in PAIS.
  6. International democracy promotion – builds on a REF2014 impact case study.
  7. Surveillance and the ethics of security – an emerging theme in our IERG group.

Plans to foster impact

  • Progress on Impact pipelines are reviewed termly by Head of Department, Director of Research, Director of Administration and Strategy, and Departmental Administrator (Research).
  • Individual discussions with impact leads are held twice annually.
  • Impact is also supported and reviewed by Research Committee and Impact Sub-Committee.
  • The developing REF2021 impact agenda is being monitorred and is being used to shape strategy and plans.
  • Applications to PAIS Impact fund and FSS ESRC IAA are being encouraged.

Recording of information and evidence for emerging future case studies

We are developing bespoke data collection and management systems for the archiving of REF impact information, chiefly via three mechanisms:

  1. PAIS REF questionnaire: this annual questionnaire captures detailed information about impact activity of all researchers in PAIS.
  2. PAIS REF impact email account: all evidence is submitted directly to this account from researchers as it emerges.
  3. Evidence is logged and reviewed on a monthlyly basis by the Director of Research.