IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


IOE academics named finalists for ESRC’s prestigious Celebrating Impact Prize

27 October 2020

Several UCL Institute of Education (IOE) academics have been announced as finalists for the Economic Social Research Council’s (ESRC) Celebrating Impact Prize 2020.

Education, practice and society main pic

The ESRC Celebrating Impact Prize, now in its eighth year, is an annual opportunity to recognise and celebrate the success of ESRC-funded researchers in achieving and enabling outstanding economic or societal impact from excellent research.

The UCL academics up for the award include:

  • Professor Emla Fitzsimons and Dr Praveetha Patalay (UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies) for a series of studies highlighting the mental health challenges faced by young people in the UK. Their Millennium Cohort Study research has helped to enhance the understanding of child and adolescent mental health among policymakers and practitioners.
  • Dr Anna Remington (Centre for Research in Autism and Education) for her work to improve autistic people’s employment experiences. The research investigates what barriers exist when autistic people try to enter the workforce. And the project team works with companies to remove these barriers, promoting recruitment of autistic people into their organisation, and improving the support for their autistic employees.
  • Professor Alice Sullivan (UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies) for her 1970 British Cohort Study research which revealed the benefits of reading for pleasure for children’s English and maths skills. The findings, which were first published in 2013, have had a powerful and lasting impact on government policy and education practice in the UK and around the globe.

All entrants' applications were reviewed by a panel of academics, engagement and knowledge exchange experts, and research users. The finalists have been invited to a virtual awards ceremony on 12 November 2020 when the winners will be announced.

ESRC’s Executive Chair, Professor Jennifer Rubin, said: "This is an excellent opportunity for the UK’s world-leading economists and social scientists to be recognised for how their work improves lives for a wide range of people both in the UK and in other countries, from how children are taught to read, to innovative tools helping insure Ugandan farmers, or how victims of gender-based violence can experience justice.

“Their impacts are impressive and far-reaching and I’m proud that the Economic and Social Research Council has funded this work, and that it can be fully recognised through our prestigious Celebrating Impact Prize.”

The full list of finalists includes:

  • Professor Emla Fitzsimons and Dr Praveetha Patalay of UCL, Adolescent mental health: improving young people's lives using evidence from national cohort data
  • Professor Marianne Hester of the University of Bristol, Justice, inequality and gender-based violence
  • Professor Yvonne Jewkes of the University of Bath, Humanity, Hope, Rehabilitation: Changing thinking about women offenders through prison design
  • Professor Richard Layard of the London School of Economic, Public policies for employment, skills, wellbeing and mental health
  • Dr Anna Remington of UCL Institute of Education, Enhancing the employment of autistic individuals
  • Professor Alice Sullivan of UCL Centre for Longitudinal Studies, Reading for pleasure boosts cognitive development: research findings that underpin educational practice and literacy campaigns
  • Professor Arjan Verschoor and Professor Ben D’Exelle of the University of East Anglia, Insuring previously uninsurable poor farmers in Uganda
  • Team application: Ending the Reading Wars (Professor Kathy Rastle, Royal Holloway University of London; Professor Kate Nation, University of Oxford; Professor Anne Castles, Macquarie University), Bringing the Science of Reading to Reading Instruction in Classrooms around the World
  • Team application: ESRC Centre for Population Change (Professor Jane Falkingham, Professor Maria Evandrou, Professor Ann Berrington, Professor Jakub Bijak, Professor Corrado Giulietti, Professor Peter W F Smith, Professor Athina Vlachantoni, Professor Jackline Wahba, Teresa McGowan, Becki Dey), Improving data: Strengthening the evidence base for policy

All finalists will have a film professionally made about their work and its impact, and winners are awarded £10,000 to spend on further knowledge exchange, public engagement or other communications activities.