Research and knowledge exchange

Sussex Impact Day

Sussex Impact Day is an annual day of activities designed to help you have greater impact in your work. A series of workshops and talks are aimed at sharing experiences and knowledge of how to create impact.

Registration closes at 2.00pm on Monday 18th June

The 2018 Sussex Impact Day will take place on Tuesday 19th June 2018, in the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (ACCA). 

There are four session themes running in parallel across the day: 

 Please expand the headings below for information on the workshops.

08:15-09.45 - Breakfast with impact: Spark your curiosity

ACCA Cafe

Come and join us for breakfast and find out how the University of Sussex is producing research for real change.

Sussex has a long history of working with others, including businesses, to develop innovative solutions to real world problems. Join us at our breakfast networking event to find out about our cutting-edge research, meet researchers from different disciplines across the University, businesses and local leaders over a cup of coffee and a croissant. Who knows what you might discover.

08.00 Doors open

08.15 Welcome and introduction - Sussex Vice Chancellor, Adam Tickell

08.20 Talk 1 - Ethical machine learning – Dr Novi Quadrianto

08.30 Talk 2 - Disruptive formats for 3d interaction – Dr Diego Martinez Plasencia

08.40 Talk 3 - Using astrophysics to close the diagnosis gap for dementia – Dr Liz Ford the Astrodem project

08.50-10.00 Networking and demonstrations:

  • Shape changing liquid metal like Terminator, Yutaka Tokuda
  • Tasty floats; a contactless food delivery system, Dr Chi Thanh Vi
  • 3d audio with audio metamaterials, Dr Gianluca Memoli
  • Autonomous robotic navigation inspired by insects, Prof Thomas Nowotny and Prof Andy Philippides
  • Acoustic levitation with a grid of reflecting surfaces, Dr Spyros Polychronopoulos
  • Are you who you say you are? Colin Ashby
  • Bootstrapping a corpus from the web, Jack Pay
  • Unravelling Alzheimer’s Disease, Dr Karen Marshall
  • Making marvellous medicines, Sussex Drug Discovery Centre

Book your place here

10:00-11:00 - What does impact mean for Sussex? (Plenary Session)

Auditorium

After an introduction to the day by Michael Davies, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Sussex, there will be a lecture from David Sweeney, Executive Chair of Research England, on the current research landscape and how it relates to impact. Thereafter there will be a facilitated discussion on the question: “What does impact mean for Sussex?”.

Discussants will include David Sweeney, the Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell, the Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research Michael Davies, and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Saul Becker. The Plenary will be facilitated by Paul Nightingale, Professor of Strategy.

Book your place here

11:15-12:15 - Workshops
Pathways to impact in practice: What could go wrong? (Strand 1)

Gardner Tower

One of the ways in which researchers achieve impact from their research in society and the economy is by collaborating with external partners. Secondments, residencies and collaborative work that leads to co-produced outputs are only a few ways in which researchers work with external partners.

Establishing these relationships takes time. Developing and sustaining them may well exceed the lifecycle of any research project. What happens on the ground and how the collaboration takes off in practice can be surprising. Such experiences raise questions and space for reflection about the opportunities and challenges of working with partners and in different organisational cultures.

Academics from the University of Sussex and the University of Stirling will discuss the reality of impact as experienced through work with external partners to shed light on what worked and what didn’t, and to illuminate the practice of impact.

Speakers:

The session will be chaired by Dr Liz David - Barrett, Deputy Director of the Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption, Senior Lecturer in Politics. 

Book your place here

Stakeholder mapping: A practical workshop on identifying stakeholders for impact (Strand 2)

Workshop Studio

It can be exciting to realise that your research could make a real difference in the world, but without scoping the possibilities of who could really use that research – or work with you – there’s a chance you may miss involving a key player. Taking a little time to undertake a ‘stakeholder mapping’ exercise will help identify the best people or groups to target so that you can prioritise who to contact, work with, or affect.

In this session, James Georgalakis (Director of Communications and Impact, Institute of Development Studies) will guide you through the process of conducting a stakeholder mapping exercise – and then turn it over to you. Whether you are at the end of a project or just beginning, you will come away with concrete ideas for next steps on your path to creating significant, sustainable impact.

Book your place here

REF 2021: All the latest developments (Strand 3)

Auditorium

Find out the latest developments in preparing for REF2021, and discuss its implications with colleagues.

This is an ideal session for those who are involved or interested in planning for the REF to check they’re up to date with the latest decisions from Research England (formerly HEFCE) and the University’s internal REF preparations. The session will include a briefing on all the latest news and an overview of REF preparations to date, followed by time to share questions and good practice with colleagues from across the University.

This session will be relevant for colleagues at all career stages who are interested in what the REF means for them, for Sussex, and for the HE sector. 

Book your place here

Commercialising social science research: How can you do it? (Strand 4)

Jane Attenborough Studio

Zinc combines insights from social sciences with top entrepreneurial talent and venture capital to build new, scalable, mission-led businesses. The Zinc Programme brings together 50 bright minds for 6 months to find their co-founders and build new commercial businesses from scratch. Each programme has a single mission, to solve a social problem which affects at least 100m people.

Co-founder Paul Kirby will describe Zinc in more detail, and you can find out how you might be able to get involved.

Book your place here

12:15-13.00 - Lunch

ACCA Café

Join colleagues in the open space of the ACCA cafe for a relaxing lunch and an opportunity to network with peers. Music, inviting food and drink and hopefully some sunshine will accompany this break in the day.

13:00-14:00 - Workshops
How to engage with the health sector (Strand 1)

Gardner Tower

‘How do I work with health partners?’ is something that we often hear from researchers in all disciplines. The health ecosystem, in the UK, is a complex web of different organisations working within a disjointed space, serving a population who are living longer. It’s a rapidly changing environment and health services need to innovate. However, change happens slowly and the Academic Health and Science Networks (AHSN) were introduced in 2013 to drive forward the pace and scale of innovation across the health system.

The Kent, Surrey and Sussex AHSN leads this work within the region and work alongside the Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships who set priorities as to how NHS organisations can work together to deliver the NHS five year forward plan. Collaboration underpins this work, recognising that the challenges are significant and will need the help and support of others in tackling them. AHSN’s work with a wide range of organisations including Clinical Commissioning groups, NHS Trusts, Public Health, local authorities, SME’s and Universities as well as patients themselves to redesign and develop health services that are fit for purpose for the future.

If you are interested in learning more about the current landscape that health is operating in, what’s driving change, the work of the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Academic Health and Science Network and how they are collaborating with others to develop workable solutions for the future, then this is the session for you.

Book your place here

REF impact case studies backwards: Planning for impact (Strand 2)

Workshop Studio

In this session, researchers who are currently developing impact case studies for submission to the next REF will reflect on the process. They will discuss what and how they planned or could have planned to facilitate the development of an impact case study and the reporting of impact achieved to date.

Speakers include Dr David Orr, Senior Lecturer in Social Work (Social Work and Social Care), Dr Bethan Stevens, Lecturer in English and Creative and Critical Writing (English) and Professor Mark Walters, Professor of Criminal Law and Criminology (Law)

The session will be facilitated by Felix Rehnberg, Head of Research Quality and Impact.

Book your place here

Writing an Impact Case Study for the REF 2021 (Strand 3)

Auditorium

Know who the beneficiaries of your research are and what evidence you need to collect, but struggling with your first draft? Need to find ways of articulating a complex impact narrative to best effect within a very limited word count? Look no further – this workshop covers it all. By the end of it, you will:

  • Have seen how to construct a coherent impact narrative
  • Be able to explain what constitutes good writing for an impact case study
  • Be clear how a 4* case study presents its evidence
  • Have written a paragraph for your own impact case study
  • Received feedback, or heard feedback for other people’s writing

The trainer is Kristine Pommert, a professional journalist who with her small team at Bulletin re-wrote, edited and enhanced about 300 impact case studies for the REF 2014. She has run impact-related training courses and workshops throughout England and Wales since.

Book your place here

Measuring the impact of media engagement (Strand 4)

Jane Attenborough Studio

Engaging with social media and getting it covered in the media can help extend the reach of your research. We’ll provide a few examples of how this has been done by researchers and communications professionals. But metrics are only part of the story. Estimating the social impact of the media is much harder. We will also look at some research that has tried to measure the causal effect of the media on users and draw some lessons on how media-related projects or information can translate into action. If you are hoping to increase the reach of your research or measure impact through social media or media coverage, this is the session for you.

Suzanne Fisher-Murray is the Research Communications Officer within the Research Quality and Impact team. She has 20 years’ experience working as a print and radio journalist, writer, editor and digital content manager in various communications-related roles. She has carried out impact evaluations on communications projects, managed the development of educational radio drama series in Africa, and has produced radio packages and documentaries for the BBC World Service.

Book your place here

14.15-15.15 - Workshops
Industrial Strategy: The local perspective (Strand 1)

Gardner Tower

What is Sussex doing to engage with the Industrial Strategy and how can you take part?

This session is an opportunity for researchers to see how they can plug into the local industrial strategy agenda. We will have external speakers describing what the Industrial Strategy means for them in their sectors, and there will be a discussion where we can explore how Sussex researchers can collaborate with local organisations.

There will be speakers from local government, the business community and health. Paul Nightingale, Professor of Strategy, will facilitate the session.

Book your place here

How to develop your own Theory of Change for your research project (Strand 2)

Workshop Studio

NB: This session runs from 14.15-16.30

A Theory of Change is a rather oddly-named practical tool.

  • It is an account of why the things you do will have the effect you want
  • It is a logic model that plausibly links your actions to the results you want
  • It is the thinking behind your intervention that will bring results
  • It shows the outcomes that come as a result of your work.

This is a hands-on session that will help you develop your own Theory of Change for your research project. We will look at some of the things that a Theory of Change needs to be in order to be a strong strategy document. We will scrutinise some of the thinking you will need to do to approach a Theory of Change in a meaningful way. We will look at some excellent and some poor Theory of Change examples to help you grasp the concepts covered in the session.

A Theory of Change approach can help to show what political, social, economic factors are at play. It can clarify assumptions you may hold and challenge you to think about what change is needed to support your ultimate objectives. The workshop would be relevant to anyone who wants to know more about how to use this tool to support and bring about social change.

Monika Neall is an Impact Consultant in the not-for-profit sector, helping organisations with fundraising, communications and strategy.

Book your place here

REF 2021: All the latest developments (Strand 3)

Auditorium

NB: This is a repeat of the session held at 11.15

Find out the latest developments in preparing for REF2021, and discuss its implications with colleagues.

This is an ideal session for those who are involved or interested in planning for the REF to check they’re up to date with the latest decisions from Research England (formerly HEFCE) and the University’s internal REF preparations. The session will include a briefing on all the latest news and an overview of REF preparations to date, followed by time to share questions and good practice with colleagues from across the University.

This session will be relevant for colleagues at all career stages who are interested in what the REF means for them, for Sussex, and for the HE sector. 

Book your place here

Altmetric Explorer for institutions: Tracking your impact (Strand 4)

Jane Attenborough Studio

Are you aware that your research is being mentioned somewhere online? Do you know who is saying what about your research? Can you track any of these mentions? Thousands of conversations about scholarly content happen online daily, and they can be cited as part of your evidence to showcase your research impact. Altmetric Explorer for Institutions is a platform that can track a range of sources to capture and collate this activity, helping you to monitor and report on the attention surrounding the work you care about. Demonstrating the tool through user cases, this session will highlight the ways in which you can do this.

Presented by Sahar Abuelbashar (Research Metrics Analyst, Research & Enterprise).

Book your place here

15.30-16.30 - Workshops
The role of knowledge brokers in helping translate research into action (Strand 1)

Gardner Tower

The space between research and how it is used by the outside world can seem gargantuan. Enter the knowledge broker, a mystical creature that seeks to move knowledge around, create connections between researchers and different audiences and to look for ways to translate research into action.

Knowledge brokers can play an important role in helping academics plan and develop their impact plans. This year ESRC IAA funding has been used to look at how Wired Sussex, a knowledge broker for the creative digital sector, can help build connections between firms in Brighton and academics here at Sussex.

If you’re interested in learning more about the highs and the lows of this project and what has been achieved, then this is the session for you.

Phil Jones, Managing Director Wired Sussex, will be speaking.

Book your place here

How to develop your own Theory of Change for your research project (Strand 2)

Workshop Studio

NB: This session runs from 14.15-16.30

A Theory of Change is a rather oddly-named practical tool.

  • It is an account of why the things you do will have the effect you want
  • It is a logic model that plausibly links your actions to the results you want
  • It is the thinking behind your intervention that will bring results
  • It shows the outcomes that come as a result of your work.

This is a hands-on session that will help you develop your own Theory of Change for your research project. We will look at some of the things that a Theory of Change needs to be in order to be a strong strategy document. We will scrutinise some of the thinking you will need to do to approach a Theory of Change in a meaningful way. We will look at some excellent and some poor Theory of Change examples to help you grasp the concepts covered in the session.

A Theory of Change approach can help to show what political, social, economic factors are at play. It can clarify assumptions you may hold and challenge you to think about what change is needed to support your ultimate objectives. The workshop would be relevant to anyone who wants to know more about how to use this tool to support and bring about social change.

Monika Neall is an Impact Consultant in the not-for-profit sector, helping organisations with fundraising, communications and strategy.

Book your place here

Writing an Impact Case Study for the REF 2021 (Strand 3)

Auditorium

NB: This is a repeat of the session held at 13.00

Know who the beneficiaries of your research are and what evidence you need to collect, but struggling with your first draft? Need to find ways of articulating a complex impact narrative to best effect within a very limited word count? Look no further – this workshop covers it all. By the end of it, you will:

  • Have seen how to construct a coherent impact narrative
  • Be able to explain what constitutes good writing for an impact case study
  • Be clear how a 4* case study presents its evidence
  • Have written a paragraph for your own impact case study
  • Received feedback, or heard feedback for other people’s writing

The trainer is Kristine Pommert, a professional journalist who with her small team at Bulletin re-wrote, edited and enhanced about 300 impact case studies for the REF 2014. She has run impact-related training courses and workshops throughout England and Wales since.

Book your place here

Engaging with policymakers through intermediaries (Strand 4)

Jane Attenborough Studio

Are you interested in getting your research into the policy evidence base, but aren’t sure where to start? This session will address ways of engaging policymakers, specifically through intermediaries, which include think tanks, trade associations, and charities.

Intermediaries work closely with a variety of policymakers and will have extensive knowledge of relevant and upcoming topics of interest to policymakers. They also have contacts and ways to engage with the most relevant civil servants, parliamentarians and other policymakers. Engaging with intermediaries may help you understand the needs of policymakers and where your research fits best.

This session includes insights from Syed Ahmed, Director of Energy for London, who has worked in the UK sustainable energy sector in several intermediary bodies (trade associations, an all-party parliamentary group, a charity, etc.), and has experience of supporting academics who are trying to connect with relevant UK policy-related people and organisations. We will also hear from Dr Lara Montesinos-Coleman about her experience of working with War on Want to affect policy change internationally. Participants will gain an understanding of what actions they can take to ensure their research makes a real difference.

Book your place here

16.45-18:30 - Sussex Impact Awards & Reception

ACCA Cafe/Bar

Please join us for the Sussex Impact Awards, our fourth annual reception and ceremony to celebrate and reward the outstanding impact and research achievements of Sussex researchers.

Awards will include:

  • Impact Awards across the following fields: Culture and creativity, commerce and economy, policy and practice, public engagement.
  • Impact Case Study 2018 Awards for most advanced impact case studies.

Each winning entry will receive a certificate and £1,000 paid into a personal research support account to use in support of their research and impact work.

Book your place here, and join the celebrations!

Our Sussex Impact Awards aim to recognise the hard work done to achieve impact. Find out more about how you could apply.  

Find out about past Sussex Impact Days.

Contact us

For more information about Sussex Impact Day please contact the Research Quality and Impact Team.

E rqi@sussex.ac.uk

T +44 (0)1273 678363

Follow the RQ&I Team on Twitter