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ESRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA)

Our ESRC IAA is a £1.25 million fund awarded to the University from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) over a five-year period from April 2023.

A pile of hands on top of each other
Our ESRC IAA supports knowledge exchange and research impact from within the ESRC remit

We are delighted to have secured an Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) award of £1.25 million from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) over a five-year period from April 2023. This is the first time the University has received IAA funding from the ESRC and will enable researchers to generate greater benefits from research within Economic and Social Science remit, helping create a more prosperous, inclusive, healthy and secure society.

Aims of the award

  • Aim 1: Cultivate a greater culture of impact and responsible innovation that benefits students, staff, University, wider society and economy

  • Aim 2: Accelerate impact through stimulating and supporting new and existing projects

  • Aim 3: Enhance local, regional, national and international strategic partnerships that address real-world problems

Funding opportunities

ESRC IAA Open Call (closed until late 2024)

Impact Development Awards up to £10k and £20k (out of £100k available in total) are now available to support activities that maximise the potential for the University’s social science research to make a positive impact on society, the economy and people’s lives.

For further details and to apply to the ESRC IAA Open Call:

  1. Download the application pack
  2. Sign up to attend one of the drop-in sessions on Monday 15 January 2024, 3pm-4.30pm, or Wednesday 24 January 2024, 12pm-1:30pm, or contact the ESRC IAA team to discuss your idea if you can’t make those times:
  3. Submit your application by the deadline of 4pm on Tuesday 20 February 2024 to the IAA mailbox:

ESRC IAA Flexi Fund – rolling award (closed until September 2024)

Alternative funding is available via the University Impact Fund. Please also see the links under useful resources.

The ESRC flexi-fund (up to £3k) is a responsive award for early-stage relationship building and idea development. The funding enables researchers to react swiftly to new opportunities and might include knowledge exchange/mobilisation, knowledge brokering, co-production, implementation, engagement and communication (this list is not exhaustive). For example:

  • relationship building, engagement activities and networking opportunities including workshops, events, developing training programmes in person or online
  • placements, secondments, visits
  • small-scale early-stage projects such as feasibility studies, co-producing resources or market research

We would particularly encourage projects that contribute to policy change, and secondments that exchange knowledge, skills and expertise.

This fund and the associated light touch assessment process have been developed to enable us to respond to your applications in a timely way so that you can take advantage of opportunities as they arise. These applications will be assessed for funding by the IAA Team within three weeks of submission.

Contact the IAA team to discuss your idea and request an application pack:

ESRC IAA Postdoc Impact Award Open Call – currently closed until later in 2024

Postdoctoral Impact Awards (up to £5k/project) are available to Research Assistants as well as PhD students at the University who have submitted their PhDs. The award aims to provide opportunities for career and personal development through Knowledge Exchange and impact related activities within the Economic and Social Science remit.

Applicants are invited to get in touch to submit your Expressions of Interest and to request an application pack. You will be invited to meet members of the IAA Team for support with your proposal. Successful candidates will be offered mentoring support as part of the scheme. Contact:

Related links

Contact us

Contact our IAA team for further information

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