Public engagement counts as one of the principal ‘pathways’ to generating and capturing impact from your research. If you are able to disseminate your research findings to a wider audience, thus engaging different stakeholders, you will be able to clearly demonstrate and evidence whether your research is truly having a real-world impact.
There are some really useful resources out there to help you to get started with your public engagement activities. The best website to start with is the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement – NCCPE, which can be found at: https://www.publicengagement.ac.uk/
The NCCPE defines public engagement as follows:
“Public engagement describes the myriad of ways in which the activity and benefits of higher education and research can be shared with the public. Engagement is by definition a two-way process, involving interaction and listening, with the goal of generating mutual benefit.”
The website provides a host of ideas to help you get started with your public engagement strategy, ranging from advice on funding opportunities, tools to help you develop your public engagement activities and training and networking events.
Another useful starting point is the Fast Track Impact website run by Professor Mark Reed, which can be found at: www.fasttrackimpact.com. Mark has delivered several workshops at the University of Salford over the past few years and his website provides a wealth of resources on all things impact, including how to develop your pathways to impact.
It is worth checking out his blog on ‘Evidencing impacts from public engagement’:
And also his journal article in Research For All: A common standard for the evaluation of public engagement with research (Reed, M.S., Duncan, S., Manners, P., Pound, D., Armitage, L., Frewer, L., Thorley, C. and Frost, B. (2018) ‘A common standard for the evaluation of public engagement with research’. Research for All, 2 (1): 143–162. DOI 10.18546/RFA.02.1.13.)
If you have any questions or would like to explore ways in which you can develop your public engagement, please contact Emma Sutton, Impact, Engagement & Environment Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org
Why not take this opportunity to check out the impact resources available on our intranet site: https://www.salford.ac.uk/ref