Edinburgh Research Office

Knowledge Exchange and Impact

We support colleagues in the arts, humanities and social sciences in making connections with policy makers, practitioners, industry and the public at all stages of project development, to enable impact from research.

What is knowledge exchange?

Knowledge exchange (KE) is a process which brings together academic staff, users of research and wider groups and communities to exchange ideas, evidence and expertise.

 KE activities can help you to increase the impact of your research.

What is research impact?

Research impact is defined as “the demonstrable contribution of research to changes that bring benefits to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life”.

Industry, policy, practice and the public are our main target groups for activity. In practice, a lot of KE engages across these audiences. 

What do we do?

We work alongside researchers to enable engagement with policy makers, practitioners, industry and the public. We focus mainly on the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Science.

We are networked across the College, the wider University and with a wide range of external stakeholders which enables us to connect researchers with one another and with research users.


  • We provide advice on how to develop impact in your research projects.
  • Run learning events and workshops on knowledge exchange. 
  • Broker relationships with research users in the public, private and third sectors through events and meetings. 
  • Are the first point of contact for CAHSS researchers seeking to license out intellectual property or setting up a company. 
  • Provide funding for knowledge exchange activities via the CAHSS Knowledge Exchange and Impact Grant and the University’s Economic and Social Research Council Impact Acceleration Account. 
  • Advise on how to source external funding to achieve research impact. 
  • Coordinate a network of Knowledge Exchange professional services colleagues in Schools. 

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Learn more

Read knowledge exchange and impact resources (University staff access only)

Read about research & knowledge exchange during physical distancing (Universtiy staff access only)

Read our blog posts