Impact of our research
This centre was one of the largest investments by ESRC in the field of third sector and civil society research; the relevant initiatives are listed here on the ESRC website. So as we head towards our tenth anniversary that provides an opportunity for reflection on the contributions we have made to the research and, particularly, the practice landscape.
You’d expect significant research investments to at least generate coverage that would feature regularly in the relevant media, so where better to start than the main practitioner source for the field, the trade paper Third Sector? Our work has been featured on a number of occasions – many of which are listed here - and both TSRC’s first director, Pete Alcock, and our current director, John Mohan, have been profiled therein. Less than four years into our funding, we were the subject of a very positive editorial and in 2014, after the core funding expired, a feature included some high-profile praise from significant sector spokespersons and another strongly supportive editorial, praising us as a “successful venture” which had showed that long-term investment could make a difference.
But perhaps the most unusual accolade so far has been the following, which appeared in early 2015 following the award of two ESRC grants to continue our long-running partnership with NCVO that generates the data to underpin the annual Almanac of the sector:
We’d like to think it’s tongue-in-cheek.…though you never know! It may be a truth universally acknowledged that voluntary organisations are in a permanent state of financial crisis, and that therefore research is self-evident and self-indulgent, but we’d like to think that our work has raised the level of debate in the field. So we’ll follow this over the next 12 months with more examples of the academic and non-academic impacts we have had.