"In recent years there has been mounting concern to understand the distribution, utility and influence of research findings in non-academic contexts. This concern originates in part from political imperatives to demonstrate public value, for research to move towards pragmatic considerations in wider public discourse, in cultural, industry and policy environments.
All UK Research Councils are expected to be able to demonstrate the wider impact and value of academic research. The important question that we must seek to address is: what is the contribution of arts and humanities research to society? Or, what is the impact or influence of arts and humanities research outside the academy?
The Arts and Humanities Research Council has commissioned a series of case studies to investigate the impact of arts and humanities research. Across the series as a whole, impact has been defined in its broadest sense to include economic, social and cultural elements. The case studies included in this publication focus on the social impact of two artist exhibitions, specifically concentrating on visitor responses and reactions.
Established in April 2005, the Arts and Humanities Research Council provides funding for a range of UK wide programmes, supporting the highest quality research and postgraduate training in the arts and humanities."
(Arts and Humanities Research Council UK)
2). Social Impact of Artist Exhibitions: Two Case Studies
"The four UK higher education funding bodies issued a second consultation on proposals for the Research Excellence Framework (REF), including proposals to assess the impact of research on the economy and society, and for citation information to be used by some panels to inform their review of research outputs."
(HEFCE, 2009, UK)
1). The Research Excellence Framework: A brief guide to the proposals' (Adobe PDF 124K).