• Speak to your institution’s commercialisation support team – they are an invaluable source of knowledge.

  • Speak to another social scientist who has been through the commercialisation process for tips and ideas.

  • Licensing is often the quickest way to take a business proposition to market.

  • Consultancy can be an easy first step to commercialising your research and will help you to understand the most commercially valuable aspects of your work.

  • When setting up a private company, don’t include the intellectual property in the company’s assets (instead, retain it with the university and grant a license). Otherwise, if the company fails, the IP will have to be bought back from the liquidators before it can be developed further.

  • Enhance networking opportunities by joining a local chamber of commerce and attending its events. This is a great way to build new connections raise your visibility, and learn how to talk about your work with businesses.

  • Social science research should not be regarded as a bolt-on to commercial projects. Its true value and intrinsic worth needs to be taken into account from the outset.

  • STEM sciences have a lot of success commercialising by being problem-focused; using research to provide solutions to technical problems. Social scientists can follow this model by identifying societal problems and addressing them directly.

  • When scaling-up a business, consider how knowledge can be shared as the business grows and more people become involved. 'Train-the-trainer' skills acquired by the original founders can be very valuable in this regard. Codifying these can be a useful way to maintain consistency and integrity of approach and purpose.

  • A way to gain competitive advantage is to be the first to set up a consultancy or business relating to a particular area of research and to become the foremost authority in the field.