REF specific


Toolkits, guidance and reports

  • ESRC Impact toolkit: aimed primarily at social science researchers applying for and receiving funding from ESRC but useful to other disciplines also. The toolkit defines impact and identifies the principles researchers should be aware of when applying for funding, and provides advice and guidance to help communicate research
  • Leadership Foundation Research Leaders Impact toolkit: a suite of research-based tools that can be used by higher education institutions to: develop a formal research impact strategy; devise strategies for leading, managing and practicing impact; align impact work with engagement, knowledge exchange, outreach and quality improvement; inform teaching and learning; improve processes and infrastructure; build capacity, skills and knowledge
  • Responsible metrics forum: a forum for debating responsible uses of metrics in higher education & research
  • The Metric Tide: Report of the Independent Review of the Role of Metrics in Research Assessment and Management: the Independent Review of the Role of Metrics in Research Assessment and Management was set up in April 2014 to investigate the current and potential future roles that quantitative indicators can play in the assessment and management of research. Its report, ‘The Metric Tide’, was published in July 2015
  • Fast Track Impact: training for researchers by researchers: an international training company working in the Higher Education and research and innovation sectors. Their mission is to change the way researchers generate and share knowledge, so that their ideas can change the world.

Policy Impact Resources


Impact blogs

  • LSE Impact blog: a hub for researchers, administrative staff, librarians, students, think tanks, government, and anyone else interested in maximising the impact of academic work in the social sciences and other disciplines. A space to debate, share best practice and keep the impact community up to date with news, events and the latest research.
  • Emerald Real World Impact blog: a blog that aims to support academia ad industry in working together towards a common goal – making the world a better place
  • Extended list of 4* Impact Case Studies by REF 2014 Unit of Assessment

Organisations providing training, tools and resources to support impact

  • PraxisAuril: supports knowledge exchange and commercialisation in the UK
  • Research Impact (Canada): a pan-Canadian network of 12 universities committed to maximizing the impact of academic research for the social, economic, environmental and health benefits of Canadians. RIR is committed to developing institutional capacities to support knowledge mobilization by developing and sharing knowledge mobilization best practices, services and tools
  • ARMA: the professional association for research managers and administrators in the UK – contains information on impact resources as well as offering events and training
  • EARMA: the professional association for research managers and administrators in Europe – contains information on impact resources
  • CARA: the professional association for research managers and administrators in Denmark – contains information on impact resources
  • DARMA: the professional association for research managers and administrators in Canada – contains information on impact resources
  • VITAE: contains information on training, approaches to evaluating the impact of researchers in society and of researcher development activity
  • CASRAI: a non-profit membership initiative whose mission is to adapt the principles and best practices of open standards and data governance to lead and facilitate key stakeholders in annual deliberations to develop ‘standard information agreements’ that serve as bridges between research information users
  • National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement: provide resources to support public/University engagement
  • Parliamentary Outreach Service: provides information on parliament-led events and training opportunities
  • National Alliance for Broader Impacts report: A US report on broader impacts of research

Research Council pages on impact


Impact Journals

  • Evidence and Policy: the first peer-reviewed journal dedicated to comprehensive and critical assessment of the relationship between research evidence and the concerns of policy makers and practitioners, as well as researchers.
  • Research Evaluation: an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed, international journal. Its subject matter is the evaluation of activities concerned with scientific research, technological development and innovation.
  • Implementation Science: publishes research relevant to the scientific study of methods to promote the uptake of research findings into routine healthcare in clinical, organisational or policy contexts.
  • Research for All: focuses on research that involves universities and communities, services or industries working together, the journal aims to raise the quality of engaged research by stimulating discussion about the effectiveness of engagement with researchers, research outcomes and processes.

Other useful resources