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The rationale and criteria behind the #ThinklistImpact.

People using social media
The #ThinklistImpact will focus on academics who have had influence or impact on practice

CBOS' goal is to rethink the role and responsibilities of business in creating a sustainable society. As part of this mission, we publish the #thinklist - a list of faculty thinkers on social media who focus on issues of responsible and sustainable business.

The #ThinklistImpact, focusing on academics who influence practice, was selected as the topic of our next thinklist after polling CBOS’ twitter followers. We want to highlight impact scholars in the hope that public recognition helps validate those who prioritise impact in their work.

Advancement within Higher Education traditionally depends on one's publication record, institutional pedigree, and reputation. Engaging with practice and even affecting change doesn’t tend to be valued as highly. The #ThinklistImpact plays a small part in changing this by raising the reputations of academics whose research, teaching, and service are connected to and impacting business practice.

We believe that the current climate calls for an action-focused approach to scholarship, and so want to give scholars courage to do the work that doesn’t always get its rightful acclaim. We aim to legitimise the idea of an ‘impact scholar’, by recognising and applauding successful attempts to change the world beyond academia.

What is impact?

Research impact means many different things to different people. In simple terms, we can understand research to impact practice when new knowledge influences or directly changes the way things are done or thought about in management practice outside academia. But that has many nuances.

For the purpose of the #ThinklistImpact, we have chosen to interpret an ‘impact scholar’ as someone who does one or more of the following:

  • Connects research to practice, whether through consulting or collaborating with business or civil society, providing training to organisations, or writing books and media articles that directly target stakeholders outside academia and which seek to inform practice.
  • Participates in public discourse, and shapes what and how things are discussed in the public sphere, e.g. through translation and mobilization of academic scholarship.
  • Is involved in decision making around responsible business, for example by working with policy makers or sitting on boards.
  • Seeks to bring about some sort of tangible change to professions, including the way that impact is recognised and valued within academia, or how other professions are trained, examined, and credentialed.

This is by no means a complete definition, and we are open to considering examples of impact that don’t fall into these categories. However as the #thinklist is a social media list, a key aspect is that scholars must also talk about impact online in some capacity.


  • Has or seeks to have impact in the fields of responsible and/or sustainable business, in one of the ways defined above.
  • Has a formal university affiliation, either in a business or management school, or a closely related discipline.
  • Uses social media to discuss, amplify, disseminate OR create impact.

We will consider groups as well as individuals, for example research centres

The selection process

The #ThinklistImpact will be selected by Garima Sharma, Nicholas Poggioli, Zahira Jaser and Mette Morsing.

It will be a concise, curated list that identifies impact scholars in responsible business that our curators choose to highlight at this time. The list will aim to reflect different types of impact and influence. The curators will select the final #ThinklistImpact as a subset of all eligible nominations received, including nominations and self-nominations from social media, as well as nominations made by the guest curators.

To nominate please:

  • Email:
  • Direct message @BathCBOS on Twitter or tweet us, tagging your post with #ThinklistNom
  • Tweet one of our curators, tagging your post with #ThinklistNom

It is not a requirement, but it would be appreciated if you can briefly mention the reason you are nominating a particular academic for their impact.