A droplet creating a ripple in a pool of water

NCRM Impact Prize

The NCRM Impact Prize is an exciting new initiative that will recognise and celebrate the impacts of researchers who have participated in NCRM training, used our resources or taken part in one of our initiatives or events.

Through this award, we hope to support researchers in their development, highlight their successes and demonstrate how NCRM is making a difference to the research community.

Applications for the NCRM Impact Prize closed on 15 September 2023. The winners will be announced at the 2023 Research Methods e-Festival. We will award a first prize of up to £2,000, with a further £2,000 to be shared between runners-up. We will also run a feature on the winners in our monthly newsletter and on our website.

Who can apply

This initiative was open to anyone who has taken part in NCRM training, events or activities as learners, trainers or participants, and to anyone who has used or created our resources. We invited applications from researchers in all sectors, including the academic, public, healthcare, government, voluntary/community and private sectors.

Your participation might have been as a learner or a trainer, or through your involvement in a network or knowledge-exchange activity.

Researchers were invited to enter as an individual or as a team. Applicants could be based in the UK or overseas, and can be at any stage of their career or education.

The prize was not open to NCRM staff, people working in NCRM centre partner roles or members of our independent advisory board.

How to apply

Researchers were asked to tell us about the impact of their involvement with NCRM since January 2020. By impact, we mean the marked or strong, positive effect that NCRM’s research methods training, activities or resources have had on your knowledge and skills, and how these have had a beneficial impact on the outcomes of your research.

The deadline to apply for the prize was 15 September 2023.

Applications are now being reviewed by a panel assembled by NCRM. The winners will be announced at an online awards ceremony at NCRM’s 2023 Research Methods e-Festival, which runs between 7 and 9 November.

If you have any queries, please email us on: impact@ncrm.ac.uk.

Key dates

  • Applications open: 12 July 2023
  • Applications close: 15 September 2023 at 17:00 (BST)
  • Awards ceremony: At the 2023 Research Methods e-Festival (7-9 November)

Guidance for applicants

Demonstrating impact

In your application, you should consider the impact that NCRM has had on enabling you to progress your research, and how this has enabled you to achieve broader outcomes from your research.

Your description of these outcomes should identify who has benefited from your research (for example, this might be groups such as service users of a charity, outpatients of a hospital department, a group of students, or this might be an institution, such as the Department for Work and Pensions, a local Citizens Advice bureau, or an HR department). You should also identify how these beneficiaries have benefited from your research.

Your description of the impact might include, for example, an account of changes to policy, practice, thinking or legislation; an account of how your delivery of an NCRM activity or resource has enabled others to learn and apply impactful new research skills and best practice; or it could be how, by learning new skills or gaining new insights, you have progressed your research, education or career in a significant direction.

The key thing our review panel will be looking for is that you demonstrate that your impacts are a result of your involvement with NCRM.

Examples of potential impact

We provide some examples of potential impact below (these aren’t exhaustive, as there will be plenty of impacts that aren’t included in this list):

  • Impact on research progress: where the experience of gaining skills and knowledge from NCRM has enabled a researcher to progress their study, or their research, and has contributed towards the progress of their research impacts, and their career in a meaningful way (for example, overcoming obstacles and challenges).
  • Societal impact: where the application of newly acquired research skills and knowledge to research has benefited a specific group of the public or society. This can include helping to bring about changes in practice, thinking or capacity development. For example, local or community groups or charities may have benefited from your research.
  • Policy impact: where the application of newly acquired research methods or skills to research have brought about changes in practice, thinking or capacity within public policy at the local, regional, national or international government level, which have benefited individuals, organisations or sectors involved in designing, delivering or using public services. For example, your research may have contributed to direct changes in policy; to changes in how decision-makers view issues; or to the development of more effective and efficient practices by professionals or users of public services.
  • Knowledge exchange impact: where training or knowledge exchange relating to an existing or new research method or skill, or best practice in a research method, has had a strong impact on how other researchers carry out their research.
  • Organisational impact: where the application of newly acquired research methods skills has enabled changes to take place within a public or private organisation, or department of an organisation, for example, a healthcare provider, a charity, a business or an industry. These changes might be in practice, thinking, capacity, products, processes or services, and may have had further benefits to employees, service users, or the organisation as a whole.
  • International impact: where the application of newly acquired research methods to research has enabled change in practice, thinking or capacity within business/enterprise, public policy, or societal sectors in another country, or more than one country.

Assessment criteria

The prize review panel is interested in:

  • how you have applied your research methods skills to achieve impact in your research area
  • how you have enabled others (for example, those you have trained) to apply their research skills and achieve impact
  • how your application might inspire other researchers (for example, through the personal progress you have made)
  • the significance and/or reach of the impact you have achieved.

Application form guidelines

Section 1: Applicant(s) contact details

Please enter the name and contact details of the applicant/s.

Section 2: Application title

Please enter a title for your application that reflects or describes how your participation in an NCRM activity, event or training course has had an impact on your research, and research outcomes.

Section 3: NCRM participation

Please provide details of the NCRM training, event, resource, or activity which you accessed, or in which you took part, which has contributed to the impact you have achieved (150 words maximum).

Section 4: Permissions

Please confirm that we have your permission to use any text from your application on the NCRM website or in future NCRM publications or publicity materials.

Section 5: Impact achieved (two pages maximum)

This is the main section of the form and provides the key information that will be used to assess your application.

Please write something that tells a story of how your research methods training made a difference (why, what, when, where, who, how). You may have just one key impact that you wish to describe; or you may have a mix of impacts.

Please show how the NCRM methods activity that you were involved in has resulted in, for example: a change of knowledge, or behaviour; made a societal, economic, cultural, or policy difference; made a difference to the research methods landscape; made a difference to how you have approached your research, and how this has impacted your study or career.

If you are unsure how to write this, we make some suggestions below (don’t feel you need to follow these to the letter).

  • A good way to start is to provide a summary of your impacts/outcomes.
  • Next, provide some context and background: What research methods training was involved? What problems were you trying to address using these methods?
  • Next, discuss how you used these methods: how did these methods address the problems you were trying to address?
  • Describe your impacts in more detail: What happened when you applied these research methods? Who did this make a difference to? And how did it make a difference to them? Please consider reach and significance (i) who was affected – individual people, communities, organisations? (ii) how many were affected? (iii) how important was it to address these problems? Provide evidence of this reach and significance.
  • Don't forget that impact can be sustainable, and long-lasting. Can you see any evidence that your impact has had a legacy, or will have a legacy in the future? What are the possible or likely future developments of your impact?
  • Lastly, please note that your narrative needs to be accessible to an informed, lay audience. Avoid using any technical language or acronyms. Try to explain any difficult concepts as simply as possible.


Applicants must give permission for NCRM to use the text from their application on our website or in other subsequent NCRM publications or publicity materials.