ESRC Impact Accelerator Account ESRC Impact Accelerator Account

The first phase of the UEA ESRC Impact Accelerator Account (IAA) has come to an end. From its launch in February 2015 through to 31 March 2018 our account  funded a wide range of projects across all four faculties, seeking to catalyse knowledge exchange and impact acceleration from completed research by UEA academics. In those three years our activity was divided into two separate areas:

Strategic themes

  • Influencing and assessing policy
  • Big data and societal change
  • Marine environment
  • Cultural tourism
  • Growth, including degree apprenticeships

Rapid response funding

  • Small allocations to provide pump-priming for outreach and events throughout the university

Internal decision making came from our IAA Delivery Board, with representatives from all four faculties and chaired by Prof Jacqueline Collier, Pro-Vice Chancellor Faculty of Social Sciences. Our External Advisory Board, chaired by Brian Horner (Former CEO Voluntary Norfolk) played a crucial role as our “critical friend”


We have now entered a bridging year for the IAA,  from 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019. A new expanded Delivery Board, with External members joining the Faculty representatives, will be the decision-making body. These will be supported by a wider external Reference Group. Our allocation for this bridging year will again be split between:

Revised strategic themes, each with £30,000 funding

  • Big data
  • Growth
  • Cultural tourism
  • Transforming social care

Rapid response funding, with a total fund of £100,000 and a maximum grant of £10,000.

The opening date for applications to either strand will be 1 April 2018

ESRC IAA funds are not limited to projects funded by ESRC and all are welcome to apply by completing and submitting the application form. For further information, please contact Richard Clarke, Relationship Manager and Sue Coleman, Relationship Administrator


Business Boost Business Boost

 Business Boost

UEA has been awarded a top-up fund for the ESRC Impact Accelerator Account, entitled ‘Business Boost’.

Business Boost is a partnership project between the universities of East Anglia, Essex and Sussex, which aims to extend opportunities for interaction between PhD students located across the South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) and the business sector.

The project runs until June 2019 and will comprise a series of workshops and online training sessions designed to help PhD students to build the knowledge, skills and confidence to:

  • Engage and create links with business
  • Plan successful collaborations
  • Improve communication of your research to business
  • Understand how to respond the needs of industry and business. 

Students will also have access to individual business mentors


How to access the project

All workshops and online training will also be advertised and available to book via


Outline of activities

  • Two introductory Innovation and Impact workshops

Workshop 1 (26 October 2018) – Collaborating with Business in your Research.

Workshop 2 (11 December 2018) - Research Impact through Business Engagement.

  • Online Training 

Finance Basics for Business

Thursday 4 April, 6-7pm

Thursday 2 May, 6-7pm

Everything You Wanted to Know About Macroeconomics, but Were Afraid to Ask

Monday 8 April, 6-7pm

Monday 20 May, 6-7pm

Branding Basics for Business

Monday 25 March, 6-7pm

Thursday 16 May 6-7pm

Competitive Advantage

Thursday 18 April, 6-7pm

Thursday 9th May, 6-7pm

Intellectual Property Basics

Thursday 25 April, 6-7pm

Monday 29 April, 6-7pm

How to Work on a Consultancy Basis

Monday 1 April, 6-7pm



Paid Consultancy Traineeship Projects Workshop

This friendly and supportive one day workshop will prepare you for the upcoming Paid Consultancy Traineeship Projects:

·       How to manage client relationships

·       Project management of a consultancy project

·       Time and expectation management

·       Examples of types of projects you can get involved in

·       Understanding the business cycle and how your project fits in

From the workshop, this will lead into the paid consultancy traineeship projects.

Monday 20th May

9.30am – 4.30pm (refreshments and lunch included)

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Book your place online at

(25 places available)

Paid Consultancy Traineeships Project

The Consultancy Traineeship projects are designed for social science doctoral research students (PhD students) giving them experience of working to strict deadlines on a real project which will have an impact on a business.

The aim to support social science PhD students to

·         gain insight into how businesses use research and understand how to respond effectively to the needs of business;

·         maximise the impact of research in the business world and wider society;

·         communicate research effectively to a non-academic audience;

·         develop business skills and networks for future careers.

·         to be paid for a business project

The funding for these projects comes through the ESRC Impact Acceleration Account, which supports ‘impact’ of research through engagement with non-academics. Participating students will be paid £1,000 upon successful completion of their project.

The Consultancy Traineeship projects provide social science PhD students with an opportunity to develop business skills and knowledge and to explore collaborations that could lead to long-term positive changes in the ‘real world’.

The PhD student consultant will apply their academic research knowledge, skills and experience to help the client solve technical or other problems that are specific to the client's business

Contacts and further information

For further information, or to discuss your application, please contact Andrea Finegan, 

*  Å 01603 597387


  • Business Boost Conference  19th & 20th June 2019

A two-day conference around the themes of Growth and Independent Living. Looking at how researchers and businesses can work together to optimise their impact in these fields. This conference will include workshops, lectures and opportunities for PhD researchers to link-up with businesses.

The two day conference will be held at the National Centre for Writing, Dragon Hall, 115-123 King Street, Norwich, NR1 1QE with an evening business networking event on 19th June at the Anteros Arts Foundation, 15 Fye Bridge, Norwich, NR3 1LJ.

For further information and to sign up for the conference and online session(s), go to:

If you have any questions about the series, please contact Andrea Finegan ( or Clare Sandall (


Who to contact about the project

Andrea Finegan, from the Norwich Business School at UEA, is the UEA’s Academic Lead for the Business Boost project and Clare Sandall is the UEA’s Project Administrator. 

If you would like to find out more about the project or would like to receive email-alerts with details of upcoming events, please contact Clare Sandall (