20 Jan 2015 Swindon - The recently published results of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) show that the impact of research funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has been both deep and long lasting. Of the case studies covering engineering and physical sciences, 85 percent of them involved EPSRC-supported researchers.
Minister for Universities, Science and Cities, Greg Clark, stated: "The UK boasts a global reputation for scientific excellence. As the recent REF results have shown, the research being funded by EPSRC is having a real and lasting impact. Enabling scientists to bridge the so-called 'valley of death' that lies between the lab and the marketplace is crucial for our economy and an important part of our Science and Innovation Strategy. Extending the Impact Acceleration Accounts will further bridge this gap, and will enable scientists to contribute towards successful businesses, taking ideas through to market."
Professor Philip Nelson, EPSRC's Chief Executive, stated: "The REF results show that the research EPSRC supports is both excellent and has impact. Universities are using the Pathways to Impact process and Impact Acceleration Accounts (IAAs) to plan how their research is going to be communicated, translated and accelerated to users and moved further along the line."
Examples of EPSRC related REF case studies are:
EPSRC has announced a further GBP30 million which is to be allocated to universities to bring about impact through IAAs. This will build on the GBP60 million allocated in 2012 which gave awards ranging from GBP600,000 to GBP6 million to 31 universities across the UK.
Professor Nelson stated: "The last tranche of Impact Acceleration Accounts has not just impacted the research landscape, but changed it by making it easier for scientists to develop their ideas and to collaborate with industry."
IAAs help speed up the contribution that scientists make towards new innovation, successful businesses and the economic returns that benefit UK PLC.
For example, a novel electronic voting system stemming from an IAA has been deployed by the Victoria State Electoral Board of Australia in late 2014.
Further examples of recent IAA outcomes include: