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research will only have real world impact if it reaches the right people. Before
you begin your communication plan, think about what you want to achieve. Who
are your target audience(s) are and how you will reach them? What channels will
be the most effective and what tone/angle to do you need to employ to be
effective in reaching them? Non-specialist audiences will need the work to be
translated into a format that is easy to digest. Remember that ‘the general
public’ is not a homogenous group. Who specifically are you addressing and why?
Policy and practitioner communities may have greater technical knowledge than
others but will each require a different approach.
about your narrative arc: what is the problem your research is trying to
address; why is this important; how has your unique research insight led to a
positive change; and who has benefitted and how? Keep asking yourself ‘so
what?’ to make sure you are focussed on why your impact matters and why people
should be interested.
about the reach of your impact (the
variety and extent of beneficiaries, relative to the potential pool of
beneficiaries) and the significance (the
degree to which the impact has informed, enabled or influenced behaviour of the
beneficiaries). Make sure you are clear, specific and don’t undersell yourself.
your list of communication activities, relative to your objectives, and ensure
you have the skills and resources to deliver them. These could include:
forget to promote your work via Oxford Brookes’ internal channels too. Faculty
newsletters, Onstream, etc, are a great way to have
your work recognised.
The ODI REF Impact Toolkit advises:
Oxford Brookes’ Scholarly Communications Team
can provide advice on academic publishing, data management, copyright issues,