Research Impact and Co-Production of Knowledge

Principle Investigator

Professor Jon Coaffee

Research Institution

University of Warwick 

Project Summary

Enhanced knowledge transfer between academia, government and industry is now key to successful research impact and establishing partnerships that support intellectual insight and technological innovation.  In this research integrator role, Professor Coaffee and his team at the University of Warwick have functioned as a facilitator for Science and Security grant holders and DSTL, in order to allow them, through their own impact plans and co-ordination with other research teams, to produce high quality and user-friendly research outputs and knowledge.

Using ‘Case Study Integrity Fora’ (CSIF), they facilitated connections between academic research and users, enhanced with the use of specialist online software and a series of supplementary stakeholder engagement meetings to form a new approach – the Research Impact Co-Production of Knowledge (RICK) Strategy.

During Stage One (months 1-7), emergent research challenges were identified and ‘exploitation plans’ were developed to give greater visibility to the grant holders and DSTL. Stage Two (months 8-12) developed greater opportunities for impact, engagement and integration and explored opportunities to allow research results to inform policy-making and professional practice. Stage Three (months 13-24) focussed on promoting research findings, producing insights and policy recommendations and establishing a lasting legacy for the projects.

Throughout all three stages, integrator activities included regular communications with, and site visits to, grant holders, programme meetings to understand and exploit synergies across the research teams; direct engagement with user communities – including workshops and meetings with government departments and the development of policy briefings.


As part of their integrator activities, Professor Coaffee and his team coordinated and authored a review of the Ministry of Defence ethical review process for DSTL entitled ‘Ministry of Defence Research Ethics Committees (MoDREC) Review for the ESRC/DSTL Science and Security Programme’. 

Ethical review has become an increasingly important aspect of conducting social science-focused research with many areas of research adopting increasingly rigorous ethics approval processes given the sensitivity of the research being conducted. 

Professor Jon Coaffee 

Further to this, they supported grant holders to maximise impact by building lasting networks and fostering research impact communities between social and natural/physical scientists, academia, government and industry, laying the foundations for future collaborations and continued synergies beyond the funded life of the projects. 

They also identified opportunities through horizon-scanning to ensure projects keep stock of developments and opportunities within the defence and security sectors and facilitated the cross-fertilisation and integration of research findings, providing added intellectual value through a range of innovative strategies and techniques.

Contact Information

For further information email Professor Coaffee at