The Real Impact of Change

Achieving real change in research is hard, complex work. The combination of outdated and prescriptive academic systems, make change difficult.

We understand these challenges, and despite the difficulties, we know that real, exciting change is happening through researchers across the world who are thinking differently about how they approach their work.

We believe that any change is worth celebrating, no matter how big or small it is and, as part of our Real Impact of Change Campaign, we are showcasing the stories of the pioneers who are driving change in research, little by little in their institutions, and across the world.  We hope that sharing these stories will inspire others to follow suit. We have also benchmarked how ‘impact’ is viewed around the globe and how ‘change ready’ we really are as a sector.

Why is Emerald doing this? Our goal is to help our authors develop their pathways to impact and help our users to make evidence-based decisions to create change. As a publisher, we are working with communities to help realise a vision of the real impact of research, co-created and reaching beyond the walls of academia.

As a signatory of DORA, Emerald recognises the need to take a broader and more inclusive approach to research evaluation. This extends to the responsible use of metrics. The real impact of research is so much more than citations from other academics. The journal impact factor is one indicator of academic influence but, taken on its own, doesn’t tell us much about the relevance and real change that research can bring about.

We want to support and showcase research in a number of ways – from the academic influence indicated by citations, to article level attention and user engagement metrics, to its relevance to policy, practice and the public.

‘Change Ready’ report

Read the full ‘Change Ready’ report to explore the challenges facing the sector globally and find out how change ready the sector is. Over 90% of the researchers we spoke to said they wanted change in the way research was measured, we delved into the challenges, the type of change they would like to see happen and what support was needed for real change to happen.

View Report

Video Series

Hear the stories of the people that are driving change in academic research through our latest interview series. In this series we investigate the challenges facing the sector, what these pioneers have done to overcome these barriers, how they are approaching their research and their one piece of advice to you on how to make a difference.

View Videos


Download our infographic of key information and statistics on how change ready the sector is.

View Infographic

Free to access resources

Download our impact workbooks to help you on your journey to driving change.

Impact Literacy Workbook

This workbook is designed to help individuals think through some of the key aspects of impact and to help develop skills in impact planning.

View Workbook

Institutional Impact Health Workbook

This workbook is designed to help institutions consider how ‘healthy’ they are in terms of supporting and generating impact and identify how they can improve it.

View Workbook

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