REF Impact Case Studies

The introduction of the assessment of impact, contributing to 20% of each submission, and the results of REF2014 has served to highlight the way in which the University has made real world impact and is advancing the world around us. 

USW Research has led to major benefits within the UK and global economy, society and culture across a diverse range of research areas.  The below are a selection from USW's REF Case Study submissions - the full list can be accessed here 

Database.jpg Computing: Linking archaeological data

This case study highlights how research has enabled archaeological professional and commercial organisations to integrate diverse archaeology excavation datasets and significantly develop working practices. 

As a result of the research, the Archaeology Data Service, English Heritage, the Royal Commissions on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland and Wales have published as Linked Data important excavation datasets and national vocabularies that can act as hubs in the web of archaeological data.

biomass grinder anaerobic.jpg  General Engineering, SERC 

This  case study describes the impact of the research work relating to anaerobic process technology undertaken within the Sustainable Environment Research Centre (SERC) and its industrial interfacing arm, the Wales Centre of Excellence for Anaerobic Digestion (AD). Anaerobic process technology is used globally to produce renewable energy, and other resources from wastes and low value biomasses. These impacts can be grouped into the following areas:

  • Informing Government Policy
  • Development of industry guidance, best practice, protocols and regulation
  • Driving innovation and the implementation for more efficient anaerobic digestion and biohydrogen production technologies, nationally and internationally.

crime.jpg Social Policy, Homicide Investigation

This case study details Fiona Brookman's contribution to new methods of Homicide Investigation. Professor Brookman is one of the few academics in the United Kingdom (UK) studying both the nature of homicide and police homicide investigation. She is the only criminologist in the UK to use this knowledge to inform directly methods of homicide investigation in both the UK and the United States (US).

Prof. Brookman's research has produced new insights into the nature and circumstances of homicide and homicide investigation. The first four pages on the Murder Investigation Manual, commonly viewed as the definitive guide on homicide investigation in Britain, are based on Brookman's research on the characteristics of homicide.


small nations.jpg Small Nations, Centre for Media and Culture in Small Nations 

This case study highlights the work undertaken in analysing and developing Creative Industries in Small Nations. Until the Centre for Media and Culture in Small Nations was established in 2006, there was no coherent, multidisciplinary programme of research examining the creative industries through the distinct framework of small nations, including Wales. By drawing together researchers from diverse arts and media disciplines, the Centre has provided a thorough analysis of the creative industries in Wales and informed public debate on their artistic, social and economic contribution to the nation's civic life. 

Original research delivered by the Centre has highlighted new insights for organisations, and their users, including BBC Wales, National Theatre Wales, the Welsh Music Foundation and community radio.

Zanzibar Queens Art and Design, Zanzibar Soccer Queens 

This case study highlights Professor Ayisi's influential work 'Zanzibar Soccer Queens (2007) and its impact on Civil Society and Cultural Life in Africa and Europe'. Zanzibar Soccer Queens has had a series of cultural, social and policy impacts which include the emancipation of the players 'Women Fighters' , improved respect an understanding of Muslim women, better health and well-being of women and girls in Zanzibar through increased involvement in sports, and a change in government policy to allow girls in Zanzibar to play football in schools. 

The film's screenings have also been used to raise issues from racism in football to health matters such as HIV/AIDS.  

 The above examples are a selection from USW's REF Case Study submissions - the full list can be accessed here