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Links on Impact to Research Funders

Public Policy Impact and Research Council Funding


Research Councils UK has policies and guidance for research impact including public policy impact. There is guidance for completing Pathways to Impact, which detail impact activities (such as communications and engagement, collaboration) that will contribute to the impact of funded research.

Public Policy Impact is also addressed by each of the research councils as below:

Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

which includes advice and guidance on public policy impact as well as Engaging with Government course which providers researchers with an insight into the policy making process:

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

which includes Impact toolkit and rewards for Impact 2014 and evaluation studies in relation to the policy and practice impacts of ESRC-funded research (

Medical Research Council (MRC)

Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)

Website provides case studies of NERC science used by policy makers.

NERC produces a booklet ‘Science into policy', which documents the relevance of science to policymakers; identifies available opportunities, routes and best practice to influence policy-making; and how to communicate science to policy makers including case studies from the impact of research’. Available at:

Cambridge academics led by Professor William Sutherland also assisted NERC in producing the following report, ‘Top 25 challenges to UK biodiversity’, where environmental scientists and policy-makers drew up a list of the 25 most pressing new issues likely to affect biodiversity in the UK before 2050.

The top 25 report is now being widely used within government organisations. Available at:

Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)

Wellcome Trust

British Academy

The British Academy has a Public Policy Programme that includes reports, perspectives, forums and events to bring together academics and policy makers. It includes a useful report bringing together respected experts across social sciences who were each asked to write about a single action which could be adopted in order to reduce health inequalities, entitled ‘if you could do one thing …’ available at:

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Inaugural Social Science and Law Interdisciplinary Conference

Mar 12, 2018

The recent Inaugural Social Science and Law Interdisciplinary Conference, held at Jesus College in Cambridge, brought together leading academics from law and the social sciences, including economics, to discuss inequality and the rule of law in the global north and the rising powers, particularly China.

The challenges of experimental government’ seminar series

Nov 17, 2017

This seminar series is organised by the Department of Sociology at the University of Cambridge


Nov 16, 2017

A programme of events focusing on imagined futures on a range of topics related to inequality from leading speakers.

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About Us

We aim to support public policy research across Cambridge University, working with colleagues in science, social science, the arts and humanities, to apply new thinking to public policy problems and promote research and analysis into the public policy process. We hope to connect and raise the profile of existing public policy related work across the University and support collaborative research that includes policy development in a range of subject areas. 

Contact us if you are interested in joining the initiative or would like to know more.