The Celebrating Impact Prize is our annual opportunity to recognise and reward the successes of ESRC-funded researchers who have achieved outstanding economic or societal impacts. The 2019 awards ceremony took place on 9 July at the Royal Society, London.

Since it was established seven years ago the Celebrating Impact Prize has highlighted and recognised some of the ways in which ESRC-funded research impacts the economy and society. In that time there have been over 300 nominations for awards and 77 outstanding finalists from across the UK.

All our winners and finalists have demonstrated the impact of their work and illustrated its relevance and importance to society. They are already contributing to policy debates in their specialist areas and hopefully their influence will continue for many years to come. Indeed, a key part of the success of our Impact Prize is how previous winners have become trusted sources of evidence, continuing to promote and further research into topics that are vital to people and society.
 

Outstanding Early Career Impact (in partnership with SAGE Publishing)

Winner

Dr Shona Minson, University of Oxford

Research on how the sentencing of mothers affects children has changed practice for judges, magistrates and Probation Officers, who now consider how children will be affected by their parents’ sentence.

 

Finalist

Dr Chloe Holloway, University of Nottingham

Research into how autistic individuals are affected by police custody has led to new autism guidance for all police in the East Midlands, shaped the design of ‘autism-friendly’ custody cells, and changed police practice in supporting neurodivergent individuals in custody.

 

Outstanding Public Policy Impact

Winner

Professor Susan McVie and Professor Lesley McAra, University of Edinburgh
A 20 year study of 4,300 young people shaped the Scottish Parliament bill to raise the age of criminal responsibility from eight to 12 years,and underpins a change in policy to counter youth offending.

Finalist

Professor Steve Martin (Wales Centre for Public Policy) and colleagues

The Wales Centre for Public Policy is helping to inform and shape policy decisions by presenting research evidence directly to government ministers, producing over 120 studies in the last five years – supporting effective policymaking and benefitting public services across Wales.

 

Outstanding Societal Impact

Winner

Professor Kate Reed (University of Sheffield) and colleagues

Medical and sociological research into non-invasive baby post-mortem using MRI imaging has changed NHS training and post-mortem care processes, increased uptake in post-mortem consent by parents, and initiated new bereavement support groups.

Finalist

Professor Louise Archer (UCL Institute of Education) and colleagues

Findings from the ASPIRES study have informed a new approach to science teaching which supports more young people, from more diverse backgrounds, to engage with science – reaching over 600,000 students and informing education policy in over 20 countries.

 

Outstanding International Impact

Winner

Professor Nic Cheeseman (University of Birmingham) and colleagues

Research on legislatures and political parties has strengthened the Westminster Foundation of Democracy’s work in over 30 developing countries worldwide, while findings on vote manipulation are helping the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and other organisations to safeguard elections.

Future Promise award

Dr Chloe Holloway, University of Nottingham

The Future Promise award is a prize for the finalist who showed great promise for impactful research and whose work has much potential, but which could be expected to reach its full impact in future. The award recognises Dr Holloway's research on making police custody more autism-friendly.

 

Panel's Choice award

Professor Louise Archer (UCL Institute of Education) and colleagues

The Panel's Choice award recognises that a finalist's work was highly commended by the judging panel. Professor Louise Archer and colleagues won the award for their work on a new approach to science teaching which supports more young people to engage with science.