Public Engagement

Who to engage

Researchers may engage with a diverse variety of publics. The best engagement approach will always be designed around an informed understanding of your audience, so it's very important to consider who you want to engage with, and who wants to engage with you. Ask yourself who would be interested in and / or have a stake in your research.

When thinking about who might benefit from your research and how they might benefit, you could draw on the Planning for Impact Toolkit developed by the University's Research Development & Support Office.

In addition, the University has a couple of other services that can support you to engage with specific audiences - policymakers and publics interested in health research:

  1. The Institute for Policy Research - offering expertise in forging links between research and policy worlds
  2. Bath Research & Development - offering expertise in involving in health research those with experience of a particular health condition, service users and members of the public 

Finding your audience

Click on the image to see a range of different groups of people you could engage with.

Potential partners and stakeholders map

If you're new to public engagement and are considering audiences for the first time, you might like to bear the following in mind:

  • Work with an audience you feel you already know a little about
  • Put yourself in their shoes - think about why they would want to engage with you. If you're not sure, ask them!
  • Seek advice from others who have previously worked with your audience
  • Be wary of the language you use - avoid jargon! 

Once you've decided who to engage, you can start thinking about how to engage them.