Research

Our staff produce groundbreaking research across a range of areas, offering a variety of expertise - from sustainability to economics and science policy.

As a business or organisation, you can commission research and benefit your organisation through knowledge exchange. As a student, you directly benefit from our research experience and knowledge because it informs our teaching.

Explore our research case studies below to get a flavour of our interests and expertise.


Financial risk management

A digital line graph representing our research into new models for determining margins on derivatives trades

Carol Alexander, Professor of Finance at Sussex, is influencing the creation of new models for determining margins on derivatives trades - assisting the European Regulations' recommendation for a move away from the Standard Portfolio Analysis Tool (SPAN) that has been used to determine margins for more than 20 years.

Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. is using Carol's research to design a new margin model for interest rate swaps, which Professor Alexander is responsible for validating.

Learn more about Professor Alexander's research into financial risk management


Employee engagement as a driver of high performance and morale

Two nurses in a hospital representing our research into drivers and outcomes of employee engagement within the NHS

Katie Bailey, Professor of Management at Sussex, recently led research funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The aim of this research was to explore ways of raising employee engagement within the NHS as a potential solution to low staff performance and morale.

As well as providing an influential report, Professor Bailey's work provided NHS managers with a series of guides on how to measure and improve levels of engagement.

'[Materials produced by Professor Bailey's research are] addressing some complex issues in a clear and comprehensive way. They fill a gap in resources available for senior leaders and significantly expand the material for line managers. In addition, they update the evidence base for HR colleagues to draw on.'

Steven Weeks
Policy Manager at the NHS

Learn more about Professor Bailey's research on employee engagement in the NHS


Estimating the social cost of carbon

A landscape shot of a nuclear power plant representing our research into new ways of estimating the social cost of carbon

Richard Tol, Professor of Economics at Sussex, works as an adviser to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and has been instrumental in their understanding of the economic impacts of climate change.

Richard’s research has developed a new way of estimating the social cost of carbon (SCC). In June 2013, the US Government announced an increase in the SCC based on Professor Tol's research, subsequently influencing decision-makers across the globe.

Learn more about Professor Tol's research on climate change


Assessing the impact of National Minimum Wage

Richard Dickens, Professor of Economics at Sussex, is a member of the Low Pay Commission (LPC) - an independent body that advises the government on the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

Professor Dickens' research found that there would be little negative effect on employment rates from expanding the NMW to 21-year-olds. Subsequently, around 55,000 young workers have benefitted from legislation that reduced the age of eligibility for the NMW from 22 to 21.

'Professor Richard Dickens has been one of the most important contributors to the evidence base of the LPC since it was established in 1997. [His work] was a very important factor in strengthening our evidence base sufficiently to convince the Government to change policy.'

Tim Butcher
LPC Chief Economist

Learn more about Professor Dickens' work with the Low Pay Commission


Brighton Fuse: growth in the creative, digital and IT cluster

An office in Brighton with people working on their laptops, representing our research into the digital, creative and IT industry

Small- and medium-sized companies in the creative digital economy have seen above average market growth in recent years. Brighton, with its thriving creative, digital and IT cluster, is a perfect case for investigating the drivers of this.

The Brighton Fuse research explores this growth and its contribution to the local economy. It has been instrumental in the launch of a City Deal for Greater Brighton, which has seen a £170 million investment - creating 8,500 jobs.

Learn more about the Brighton Fuse research on creative and digital sector growth


The Entrepreneurial State

Mariana Mazzucato, RM Phillips Professor of the Economics of Innovation, is revolutionising thought on the state as a driver of technological innovation - and influencing the way governments approach investment in technology in many countries.

Professor Mazzucato's research suggests that many of today's innovative technologies are a result of government-funded research projects - challenging the assumption that the state's role is restricted to fixing market failures.

'Mazzucato’s ideas are fuel for a growing political debate about what portion of the country’s wealth pie should be taken by the private sector.'

Rana Foroohar
Assistant Managing Editor at Time Magazine

Learn more about Professor Mazzucato's research on the Entrepreneurial State


Find out more about research in our Departments