The "impact wars": what attempts to assess research impact tell us about relations between science, the state and citizens in the UK today

9th Nov 2009

15:30 - 17:00

Seminar Rm 1.06, Old Surgeons' Hall, High School Yards


This paper discusses current policy debates in the UK about how to account for the impact of publicly funded research. Research council concerns with assessing impact and the development of the Research Excellence Framework by HEFCE will be put in the context of longer running policy justifications of public spending on research. The paper will reflect on how the concept of sociotechnical imaginaries introduced by Jasanoff and Kim (2009) can help us understand current concerns with research impact, and contribute to a richer picture of relations in the UK between science, the state and citizens.