The University of Bath is piloting a new hub to bring together policy engagement training and activities across the University, and to expand our policy engagement activities externally.

The Bath Policy Engagement Academy, initially launched as a 12-month pilot, aims to elevate the ambition, capacity, and capabilities at the University in relation to policy engagement. It will leave the University more competitive in the context of growing demand for greater engagement between policy and academia, and the rapid expansion of initiatives across the UK that aim to bridge these two worlds.

The new Academy, which will officially launch in January, will be hosted by the Institute for Policy Research (IPR), building on the IPR’s successful policy impact programmes and work that has been delivered over the past ten years.

By consolidating the University’s policy engagement activities and strategically aligning this work with broader research objectives and priorities, the Academy aims to create new routes to regional, national, and international policy impact while generating research income via successful research grants. It will also help amplify the impact of existing University-wide initiatives, such as the Bath Beacons.

This will be achieved through the targeted provision of policy engagement training and coaching, alongside other resources and opportunities, as well as the establishment of new externally facing policy engagement activities. The latter will involve an expansion of the existing IPR Policy Fellowship Programmes that connect civil servants and regional public policy officials with academics from across the University of Bath via bespoke programmes of 1-2-1 meetings. Two new strands of the Programme, to be rolled out early next year, will be specifically targeted at regional policymakers and health policy officials.

Professor Julie Barnett, Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), said:

"In a quickly evolving policy engagement landscape, the launch of the Bath Policy Engagement Academy will help us increase the impact of our research on public policy, leaving us better placed to benefit from new and emerging opportunities. The University has already earned a solid reputation for its policy engagement work, and is now building on these foundations to be strategically equipped to drive forward even greater policy impact and engagement."

Professor Nick Pearce, Director of the IPR, adds:

"We are pleased to host the Bath Policy Engagement Academy at the IPR. We have a successful track-record of supporting academics across the University with their policy engagement work and we have established a strong reputation externally for effective, fast-paced and relevant policy engagement via the Policy Fellowship Programmes and bespoke events. We look forward to building on this work, putting the University in an even stronger position with regard to public policy impact."

Enquiries about the IPR Bath Policy Engagement Academy should be made to Amy Thompson: