Reflections on Research Impact

Nine Part Series

Included here are nine video resources intended to give you a quick, easy to digest introduction to research impact: explaining the concept, how to approach it and some of what is involved.

These resources have been created for NUI Galway by Saskia Walcott (Walcott Communications), an impact consultant based in the UK.

The first three episodes set the scene: defining impact, confronting some misconceptions and exploring the journey from research to impact.

Episode 1. What Does Research Impact Mean?

This introduction will define research impact, how impact differs from outputs and outcomes and why outcomes are valid as part of impact reporting.  


Episode 2. Five Common Impact Myths

The five common myths about impact:

It has to be big.
Only applied research has impact.
You cannot plan for it.
Only economic impact counts.
It compromises academic freedom.


Episode 3. The Impact Journey

The various stages from research to impact; why the passage of time plays a significant part in understanding the impact and what is reported.

Episodes 4-7 go into the practicalities, breaking down pathways to impact.

Episode 4. Pathways To Impact

There are many pathways to impact. This is a small generic overview of different types of pathways and how they may be helpful to you.


Episode 5. It’s All About Relationships

Relationships that sustain the impact journey; tips on building and maintaining successful relationships with stakeholders and partners.


Episode 6. Evidence of Research Impact

This episode is about identifying and obtaining evidence and we will cover: what that means, what to collect, how to go about it and when to do it.


Episode 7. Writing an Impact Case Study

This episode offers some guidance in writing an impact case study.

The final two episodes are podcast interviews with researchers reflecting on their own experiences of achieving impact from their research.

Episode 8. My Impact Journey

This episode is an interview with Professor Fiona Henriquez (School of Health and Life Sciences, University of the West of Scotland), on her experience of moving from conducting blue sky research to working with industry partners.


Episode 9. Impact and the Arts

The final episode is an interview with Professor Jiang Jiehong ( Head of Research at School of Art, Birmingham City University), on his perspective of research impact, some of the challenges in evidencing impact and why he's found the process quite inspiring.