UCL Museums & Collections
Helping researchers deliver impact
What is impact?
Impact is the demonstrable contribution that excellent research makes to society and the economy.
Research grant applicants are encouraged to explore, from
the outset, who could potentially benefit from their work in the longer
term, and to consider what could be done to increase the chances of
their research reaching those beneficiaries.
According to RCUK, applicants are encouraged to think
carefully about the three questions asked within the Impact Summary and
Pathways to Impact section of applications-
- Who might benefit from their research?
- How might they benefit?
- What will be done to ensure that potential beneficiaries have the opportunity to benefit?
What we offer
UCL Museums can offer help and assistance to deliver impact. We can help develop an exhibition to showcase your research, creating a forum for the public to engage with UCL research. We can also help to organise events and advise on the development of workshops geared towards your preferred target audiences, stakeholders and partners. Additionally, we can host events, workshops and receptions in our museum spaces.
Please have a look at the following examples and rough costing sheet for more information.
Slade school graduate Mike Tuck and artist Will Tuck approached the Grant Museum with the idea to create the first exhibition of artworks by multiple animal species and to use the unique setting of the Grant Museum to display paintings by elephants, chimpanzees, gorillas and orang-utans next to remains of the species that created them. The exhibition challenged definitions of what counts as art as well as raise issues of ethics.
The exhibition was co-curated with the Grant Museum
manager, Jack Ashby who used his expertise in interpretation and
marketing to deliver an engaging and accessible exhibition to the widest
audience possible. UCL’s Exhibitions Co-ordinator Susie Chan mounted
the works on paper and installed objects and display equipment in the
museum. Grant Museum Curator Mark Carnall arranged borrowing objects
from other museums to support the exhibition.
The exhibition was incredibly successful, receiving
extensive national and international press coverage including radio and
televisioninterviews, exhibition reviews and listings. Art By Animals
featured in over 40 publications reaching millions of people from BBC
radio, television and web coverage to The Sun newspaper and Spanish,
French, German and Irish interest.
The exhibition attracted thousands of visitors to the museum and was extended due to demand. The total cost of the exhibition was £850 and 1-2 weeks of staff time.
Object Retrieval was a mass participation art project that took place from 15-21 October 2009 on a converted Routemaster bus in the main UCL Quad on Gower Street, London.
Object Retrieval was a project by internationally
renowned artist Joshua Sofaer and UCL Contemporary Projects Curator
Simon Gould, in association with UCL Museums & Collections. It was
funded by the Wellcome Trust.
A single object from the UCL Pathology Collections was
exhibited on the bus and explored by thousands of people from their own
personal or professional perspectives for 7 days, 24 hours a day. These
explorations were recorded on the project website in a wide range of
media. The results were astonishing with contributions ranging from the
hyper-scientific to childhood memories via the Gospels, Jack Kerouac,
psychoanalysis and pretty much everything in between. While the event
only lasted a week the knowledge and ideas that surrounded the object
are still being generated to reveal new meanings.
Short-listed for a Museums & Heritage Award for Excellence in 2010, Object Retrieval worked equally well as an art project, public engagement, educational initiative, experimental research methodology, meditation on museum interpretation or a fun day out.
UCL Museums & Public Engagement run over 100 events per year from public lectures through to debates, comedy evenings, hands on sessions and film screenings that are attended by hundreds of visitors. The events are programmed, marketed and evaluated by staff at the museums to deliver high impact engagement to UCL’s key audiences in the campus and beyond.
By working with museums and collections to run an event you
will receive guidance on how to plan an event to be as engaging as
possible as well as accessing the established audiences of the events
programme. Furthermore, the established marketing channels used by the
museums bring the events to the widest possible audience and are
regularly marketed through Timeout, UCL Brain Food and many online
Beyond the event itself, UCL Museums & Public Engagement has expertise in undertaking evaluation to demonstrate success and there are options for follow-up activities including event write ups on the UCL Museums Blog or the UCL Events Blog.
The UCL Museums are some of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring places on campus and play host to a number of receptions be it a book launch, AGM or networking event. Hosting a reception with a twist can be a great way to facilitate networking adding a sense of grandeur to proceedings in the relaxing atmosphere of a museum.
Contact Hannah Umar (email@example.com ext. 32462) to discuss Pfact costings.
Contact Krisztina Lackoi (firstname.lastname@example.org ext.30664 ), Research Co-ordinator for Museums and Collections, for collections-based enquiries and to be put in touch with a Museum staff member.
The Public Engagement Unit will be happy to advise you on planning and delivery of impact and public engagement activities.
There are also a range of research support services available for UCL staff (UCL login required).