On 12-13 June 2017 AESIS will organise their annual conference ‘Impact of Science’, for which Elsevier is lead sponsor. One of the main themes of this year will be the search for methods for stimulating and measuring both world class science and societal impact. Leading up to this conference a Webinar will be organised on 4 April 2017, in which three experts will provide insights into a topic that is related to that of the conference in June.
Researchers are obliged to demonstrate how to have impact on society with their research. More so, most of the funding institutions require proof of societal impact before any grants are awarded. Some claim however, that this requirement can limit the possibilities for a research and might even lower the overall quality, as more fundamental research has a lower priority. Others state that the quality of a research project improves if you include a focus on societal impact. During the webinar we will discuss multiple systems and methods both for raising the impact of research as well as assessing the quality of a research and the societal impact it has. There is a growing movement that wants to look beyond bibliometrics. The webinar will discuss initiatives that have been taken in institutional processes of the universities as well as evaluation and promotion standards that are in place at the moment. Our goal is to give more insight in the current shift from metrics towards the use of societal impact as an evaluation factor to assess quality. The apparent duality of research excellence and societal impact leads to this main question:
'How can research excellence and societal impact be united in one model?'
The AESIS-Elsevier webinar will foster the discussion on the interaction between research excellence and social impact by addressing the topic from the viewpoints of:
- Susanna Pehrson, Research Officer at KTH Royal Institute of Technology
Institutional processes to raise societal impact
- Rinze Benedictus, Strategic Advisor at UMC Utrecht & Policy advisor ‘Science in Transition’
Policies geared towards creating societal impact
- Peter Darroch, Senior Product Manager Research Metrics at Elsevier Management
Responsible use of metrics and expanding the basket
The webinar will take about 45-50 minutes, in which there will be presentations by three experts. Each expert will give a presentation of under 10 minutes, so there will be plenty of time for discussion with the other speakers and participants.