Assessment of Impact
What should an assessment of the project’s expected impact include?
Assessments of the project’s potential impacts should consider the outcomes and implications for both academia and industry.
How to describe the impact for academia?
Consider the impacts that will benefit academia and academic research. How will the project impact and benefit scientific research?
Potential academic impacts include:
- Quality and originality of the research
- Potential for scientific breakthroughs
- Potential for opening new lines of research and follow-up projects
- New networks of collaboration with industry, providing access to new data sources, algorithms, infrastructures, etc.
- Publication plan that supports open access to research results
How to describe the impact for industry and the economy?
Consider the impacts that will benefit businesses, either new or established ones. Impacts can have a direct effect on a company or ecosystem of companies, or they can have an effect on the wider economy and employment. It is useful to consider systemwide effects and the wider context in both the shorter and longer term. Provide examples of the mechanisms through which research and innovation can contribute to the desired outcome.
Below are some examples of the types of economic impact that are of interest. If possible, use financial metrics or other quantitative tools to describe expected impacts. While these impacts may not materialize during the course of the project, research groups and their industry partners may articulate progress towards this impact end goal. The application from the industry partner may also include an assessment of expected impacts for the industry or business in question.
Potential industry impacts include:
- Growing businesses (existing or new ones) through new or improved products/services
- The performance of an existing business is improved through the introduction of new or improved existing products or services.
- A business or sector has adopted a new or significantly improved technology or process, including through acquisition and/or joint venture.
- A new process or technique has provided access to new resources.
- A start-up has been established around a new product, service or licence and has demonstrated its viability (e.g. generated revenue or profits).
- Potential for new lines of research and follow-up projects
- Improving performance of an existing business (or businesses) through increased efficiency, productivity and/or reduced commercial risk
- Updated or enhanced technical standards and/or protocols, or enhanced strategy, processes, operations or management practices.
- Highly skilled people have taken up specialist roles or provided consultancy or training drawing on their research.
- Attracting and retaining businesses
- Research has attracted and nurtured developing businesses, for example through the licensing of technologies.
- Building opportunities in the economy (increasing economic resilience)
- A new business sector or activity has been created or expanded (e.g. development of start-ups in a new sector)
- A spin-out or start-up has been created in an emerging sector.
- Improving employment opportunities (including job creation and increase in job value)
- Employment has been created or the value of employment increased by producing a highly educated and relevant workforce that meets the needs of industry and academia.
- Enabling access to new markets and state-of-the-art knowledge for businesses
- New connections to expertise abroad.
Broadening the Scope of Impact, Harland & O’Connor (2015)
Tutkimuksen laajempi vaikuttavuus, Academy of Finland (2017)