Apply for institutional funding to unlock the impact of your organisation’s research.
Impact Acceleration Accounts (IAAs) are strategic awards provided to research organisations to allow them to respond to impact opportunities in more flexible, responsive and creative ways.
Responsibility for management of IAAs is devolved to the research organisation, to design and deliver activities that best suit their institutional strategies and opportunities. The awards are intended to add value to existing funding and take advantage of new or unforeseen opportunities to facilitate the realisation of impact.
A range of different award sizes are available by council as described below:
- AHRC: £150,000 per year
- BBSRC: indicative £100,000 per year, anticipate 15 awards
- EPSRC: specific allocations to eligible institutions, as detailed in invite letter
- STFC: £50,000 per year
- MRC: £130,000 to £800,000 per year.
Some councils may propose funding uplifts to the amounts applied for where applicants demonstrate particular strengths and where budgets allow.
You must use your IAA funding to:
- strengthen engagement with users in order to accelerate the translation of research outputs into impacts
- support, develop and foster strategic partnerships for knowledge exchange and impact, including across disciplines and sectors
- build and maintain an environment and culture that enables effective and ambitious knowledge exchange and impact, including development of skills, capacity and capability within research organisations
- provide early-stage support for progressing research outputs towards the next stages in the impact pipeline, for example:
- proof of concept projects
- market validation
- activities targeting policy, business and the third sectors
- drive continuous improvement in impact by supporting innovation, enabling ‘fast failure’, and capturing learning through appropriate mechanisms
- enable flexible and adaptive approaches to knowledge exchange and impact, including the ability to respond quickly to emerging opportunities.
Harmonisation of IAAs
For the first time, UKRI has brought together IAA funding from the participating councils and harmonised the application and award timelines and processes. Where appropriate, UKRI is encouraging research organisations to take advantage of the strategic opportunities afforded by alignment of IAA awards across disciplines.
This may include opportunities to fund impact or translational activities across discipline boundaries, running parallel internal calls, expanding culture change or training activities, or sharing common impact and translational mechanisms. Research organisations will be asked to explain their approach to harmonisation within the application (see “How to apply”).
However, UKRI recognises that opportunities for alignment may not always be obvious or accessible for all research organisations depending on discipline strengths or award outcomes (see “Assessment”). Applications will not be disadvantaged for not being able to support multiple council IAAs.
Institutional level application coordination
We are seeking institutional level applications that support knowledge exchange, user, policy and third sector engagement, translation and early-stage commercialisation.
Applications must be coordinated at an institutional level.
You need to demonstrate the value of IAAs to your whole institution’s strategy and maximise opportunities to bring together approaches.
However, IAAs should also retain sensitivity to the needs of different research and innovation communities.
Activities and costs
IAA funding can be used to support a wide range of activities that fall within the IAA strategic aims described above, including engaging users and forging strategic partnerships; building internal capability and culture; or progressing commercial opportunities – whatever best fits the strategic aims and opportunities of your research organisation.
A full description of the activities and costs that IAA funding supports can be found in the permitted activities and costs document (PDF, 120KB).
Equality, diversity and inclusion, and responsible innovation
Promoting equality, diversity and inclusion is an integral part of our vision to deliver new knowledge and an enriched, healthier, more sustainable and resilient society and culture, and to contribute to a prosperous economy.
Responsible innovation is also an integral part of our vision and we expect applicants to consider the benefits, but also potential impacts from their activities.
Details of your institutional approach to equality, diversity and inclusion, and responsible innovation are requested in the application.