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Translational Funding

Translational funding is used maximise the economic and social impacts that arise from university research. This funding enables University of Exeter academics to build and strengthen relationships with non-academic partners.

Here you will find details of the current funding opportunities available from EPSRC and ESRC Impact Accelerator Accounts (IAA), the Medical Research Council (MRC) Confidence in Concept Fund and the Research England Strategic Priority Fund (SPF) and the ESRC Festival of Social Science. These pages also provide case studies, event information, training opportunities and essential information on how to apply.

Through supporting a range of impact activities, IAAs maximise the economic and social impacts that arise from research.

The aim of the ESRC IAA’s is to create opportunities for University of Exeter social science researchers to maximise the social and economic benefit of their research through collaboration with non-academic partners (e.g. business, industry, health sector, community-based organisations, etc.) It also facilitates the creation of networks and contacts between University of Exeter social scientists and research users and agencies outside of the academic sector. In addition it promotes the social and economic benefit of research as an important element within the design and creation of research programmes amongst the University of Exeter’s social science researchers.  

Through supporting a range of impact activities, IAAs maximise the economic and social impacts that arise from research.

EPSRC IAA’s aim to increase the exchange of knowledge between the EPSRC researchers and businesses, and other organisations across a broad range of sectors. It provides opportunities to a variety of EPSRC researchers including early career applicants in developing their impact and knowledge exchange activity. It increases the mobility of people by enabling the flow, sharing and embedding of knowledge and expertise and accelerates culture change to embed knowledge exchange and impact within the University’s EPSRC research community.

The MRC Confidence in Concept (CiC) fund promotes innovation and collaboration in the development of translational medical research, and the delivery of novel therapies, diagnostics and medical devices, with industrial partners.

Research England's Strategic Priority (SPF) fund enables research activity that supports evidence-based policy making.

It aims to strengthen University of Exeter capability to drive research activity in partnership with policymakers; to ensure that the University is positioned to lead on and evaluate regional and local evidenced-based policy initiatives and creates evidenced-based policy career pathways for Early Career Researchers.

Financed by Research England’s Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF), the Open Innovation Platform (OIP) provides financial support for University of Exeter staff to accelerate the translation of research into economic and societal benefit by engaging and collaborating with external partners or by facilitating commercialisation.

The Open Innovation Platform offers two funding streams which enable academics to create links with new external organisations where there are clear opportunities for collaboration;  to develop innovative ways of engaging with existing partners; and to undertake short term collaborations with external partners  in order to translate existing research into advances in new or existing products, services, policies or practice.


In 2020, the Universities of Exeter and Bristol were awarded funding from the ESRC under the National Productivity Investment Fund to deliver a range of activities across the South West Doctoral Training Partnership (SWDTP) to build the opportunity, capacity and capability of social science doctoral students and early career researchers to engage with business.

Collaborative projects and capacity building programmes will be running until August 2021.

The Festival of Social Science is designed to promote and increase awareness of social sciences and ESRC's research, enable social scientists to engage with non-academics and increase awareness of the contributions the social sciences make to the wellbeing and the economy of the UK society.

It encourages, supports and creates opportunities for social science researchers to engage with non-academic audiences. It promotes and increases awareness of the social sciences and ESRC’s research. It enables the public to engage with social science research and engages with teachers and young people and to raise their awareness of the social sciences.