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Free training and discussion groups

A programme of free training events, a quarterly reading group and regular discussion groups, based on feedback from the impact culture community, co-hosted with a different member of the community each session.

Programme for 2024 






Free training

3 hours

2 Sep 2024


Free training

1 hour

8 Oct 2024


Free training

2 hours

9 Oct 2024


Free training


12 Nov 2024


Free training

3 hours

2 Dec 2024


Free training

2 hours

7 Apr 2025


To find out what’s planned for 2024, make suggestions or offer your own session, please contact Madie.

Free training: Influencing policy


Date: 2 September, 2024

Time: 10:00 - 13:00


This session is based on research by Prof Reed and the latest evidence on how to get research evidence into policy.

Key benefits:

  • Discover quick and easy tools you can use immediately to:

    • Prioritise which policy actors to engage with first and how to instantly get their attention

    • Create a powerful impact plan that will guarantee your research makes a difference without wasting your time

  • Discuss how to design an effective policy brief, infographic or presentation 

  • Learn how to get your research into policy, wherever you work in the world, by building trust and working with intermediaries 

  • Be inspired by primary research and case studies

Free training: The ethics of engagement and impact


Date: 8 October, 2024

Time: 10:00 - 13:00


Discover the essentials of ethical research impact in this online workshop. Drawing on the latest scholarship on the ethics of engagement and impact, this workshop provides a comprehensive framework to guide ethical engagement practices and foster meaningful, long-term impacts.

This taster session gives you essential insights and tools from the full training course offered by Fast Track Impact with Methods for Change here, which enables you to:

  • Be led by the needs and priorities of those who may be affected by or interested in engaging with research impact.

  • Systematically analyse the relative interest, influence, and impacts likely to arise for those who engage with or who might benefit from or be harmed by the research.

  • Co-design research, where possible, with those who stand to benefit or lose most from its outcomes.

  • Ensure equity, diversity, and inclusion by systematically assessing and addressing barriers to engagement by all relevant parties.

  • Adapt engagement processes, communication channels, and approaches to be inclusive.

  • Proactively identify, assess, and attempt to mitigate potential risks and negative impacts arising from research and engagement.

  • Maintain accountability through continuous evaluation.

  • Think about how to embed ethical considerations into institutional impact and research cultures.

  • Depending on the interests of the group, explore specific disciplinary issues, for example relating to STEM or SHAPE disciplines.


This workshop will equip you with practical strategies and ethical good practices to employ as you seek to make a lasting difference with your research.

Free training: Kick-start your impact case study narrative


Date: 9 October, 2024

Time: 10:00 - 12:00


Developing an impact case study is a significant undertaking. Starting this process early can help to gain much-needed clarity, both about your impact project(s) and about expectations for the final product for REF2029. In this workshop, Bella Reichard will guide you through creating (1) a narrative arc for your impact case study, and (2) an action plan to progress your impacts.

  • We will consider different approaches to framing the impact narrative. This can help with prioritising if you have several projects and need to bring them together in a coherent way,
    or to articulate the core message of your case study if you have one main project.

  • Based on her research into high- and low-scoring REF2014 impact case studies, Bella will suggest how to write a summary of your impact for Section 1 of the REF template.

  • There will be time for you to sketch out a writing frame for the whole impact case study,
    and to prioritise actions for the next few weeks, months and years.

Free training: How to promote your article and impact policy


Date: 12 November, 2024

Time: 16:00


Now that you've published your article, what steps should you take to ensure it receives the attention it deserves? Discover practical strategies to amplify your research and tailor your targeting. Whether you're an academic, researcher, or policy enthusiast, learn how to navigate media channels, engage with stakeholders, and maximize the influence of your findings. Gain actionable tips from experts in the field and empower yourself to make a real difference in shaping policies that matter. Hosted by Sean Scarisbrick, Michael Todd, and Sophie Boddington and featuring prestigious guest speakers with a Q&A session, the webinar will provide essential guidance for anyone hoping to increase the reach of their research.

Free training: The Productive Researcher


Date: 2 December, 2024

Time: 10:00 - 13:00


Find out how you can become significantly more productive as a researcher in a fraction of your current working day.

Key benefits:

  • Leave with practical tools you can use immediately to prioritise limited time to achieve more ambitious career goals

  • Gain a deeper understanding of the values that underpin your work, and the reasons why you feel time pressured

  • Identify priorities that are as much about being as they are about doing, and that are stretching, motivational, authentic, relational and tailored to your unique strengths and abilities

  • Turn these into an “experiment” to make practical changes that create a positive feedback loop between your priorities and your motivation, so you can become increasingly focussed and productive

Free training: Pitching policy options in seminars and webinars


Date: 7 April, 2025

Time: 09:00 - 11:00


Gain practical skills and confidence to deliver presentations to policy audiences that drive action and leave a lasting impression. You will learn from research on what makes a compelling presentation, including insights from TED talk speakers, and consider how you can have just as much impact face-to-face and online. Discussion includes sharing tips on dealing with nerves and increasing confidence as a public speaker.

Free training: Designing and facilitating meetings/workshops with non-academic partners


Date: 6 October, 2025

Time: 09:00 - 11:00


This session will give you everything you need to design and facilitate partnership meetings and workshops with non-academic partners that are easy to facilitate, efficient and enjoyable generate and communicate real-world impacts from your research. You will learn about practical tools to grow your confidence and effectiveness as a facilitator, which you will be able to use immediately to take meetings and workshops to a new level.

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