Welcome to the Impact Conversation

This collection of articles highlights social and behavioral science research, and interrogates the metrics by which this impact is measured.

We want to hear your thoughts, ideas, experiences and concerns about research impact and its measurement. Join the conversation using #SocialScienceImpact, comment on the articles below, or send us your thoughts at info@socialsciencespace.com.

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Medium and Short-term Recommendations to Move Forward on Measuring Social Impact

In the concluding article from their measuring impact in the business field series, Usha Haley and Andrew Jack ask: Who does this system of research benefit, and how do we throw a wider net?

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Business Education and Impact: Efforts to Turn the Tide

A number of data points suggest that business education has a ways to go before it really steps up addressing social impact and not just literature impact. But there are also a number of data points suggesting it is increasingly supporting efforts to redress that lag.

Snail on a ruller

Why Don’t Business Schools Publish More Impactful Research?

Two experts at Altmetric ask why have business schools not been publishing more impactful research? Are the most prominent, cited, and viral voices that publish in areas of business and economics employed outside of business schools?

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A Decades-Long Journey of Marketing and Public Policy Research to Support the Greater Good

Now more than ever, writes Maura Scott, as business professors, we must generate and disseminate knowledge that can help inform and promote business, as well as society’s greater good.

Four employees fist bump over workspace.

Positive Management Practices as Cornerstone for a Sustainable Transformation

Martin Becker discusses how positive management practices can improve employee well-being and attract talent in highly competitive labor markets.

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How Might Societal Impact be Recognized within an FT Top 50 Journal?

From a journal editor’s perspective, top journals play a central role in recognizing societal impact of research.


Europe’s Research Universities Call for Harnessing Breadth of Social Science and Humanities

A new report from a consortium of European research universities says if the European Union really wants to achieve its stated policy goals, it had better heed the advice of the consortium on including the “broadest possible range” of social science and humanities insights.


A Quick Examination of Existing Academic Impact Metrics and Concerns in Business Education

A new white paper from SAGE Business examines existing bibliometrics and institutional reward structures at play within business schools. We aim to move the dial toward ways in which societal impact could become central to the assessment of business and management research.

Four young adults in graduation robes, three male and one female in black and white photo

Restoring Regina Twala, Southern Africa’s Erased Activist and Anthropologist

Born in South Africa and exiled to neighboring Eswatini, Regina Twala was one of southern Africa’s most important intellectuals: a pioneering writer, academic, political activist and feminist. Why, then, has she been all but forgotten?

ESRC Celebrating Impact logo

ERSC Celebrating Impact Prize 2022 Winners Announced

Britain’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) announced winners in six categories of its Celebrating Impact Prize 2022 on Nov. 3. Now in its tenth year, the prize celebrates the success of ESRC-funded researchers in achieving and enabling outstanding economic or societal impact from excellent research. The ESRC is the UK’s largest f

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Cementing the Link Between Social Sciences and Humanities Studies with Future Employment

The author’s team’s research shows universities should rethink internships and work-integrated learning for social sciences and humanities students in a way that helps community partners build capacity for innovation.

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‘Organization Studies’ Seeks to Award Impactful Student Papers

The Organization Studies and SAGE Student Paper Impact Award is awarded annually to reward post-graduate students who have written a paper that has generated considerable societal impact.

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Social Scientists Should Take a Gander at Golden Goose Award

The annual award ceremony for the Golden Goose Award will take place on September 14, 2022, starting at 6:30 p.m. […]

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Mercury Project Names First Cohort to Fight Health Misinformation and Increase Vaccine Uptake

Through the SSRC’s Mercury Project, a first cohort of 12 teams from 17 countries is tasked with researching locally tailored solutions on how bad health information spreads, how to combat it, how to build stronger information systems, and how to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates.

Normal distribution curve

Paper on Showing Significance Proves Very Significant Decade Later

An academic paper that asserts you can present nearly any research finding as significant would be widely read and cited has received more that 4,000 citations since it was published in 2011.

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Whither Nudge? The Debate Itself Offers Lessons on the Influence of Social Science

The story of the book ‘Nudge’ offers insights into what can happen when research has an unpredictably large impact in the world of politics and policy


The Gender Banter: Implications of Not Practicing What We Preach

“When you educate a man, you educate a person, but when you educate a woman, you educate an entire generation.” The same applies to empowering women to find their footing in organized employment.

Drawing of original mechanical Turk

Paper on Amazon’s Mechanical Turk Proves a Durable Article

A 2011 paper on Amazon’s then-new and innovative Mechanical Turk, which among other things crowdsources prospective participants for social and behavioral research via an online marketplace, has garnered 7,500 citations in the subsequent decade.

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Unpacking Impact 

One reason that many social scientists care about impact is that they see in social science the promise of and a path for knowledge – data, analysis, concepts – shaping the world they want to make. 

10-year Impact Award graphic

Paper on Danish National Patient Register Keeps on Giving After 10 Years

A paper looking at the Danish National Patient Register has proved one of the most cited papers published by SAGE in 2011.

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What Ethnographers Have Learned from People Who Use Drugs

Can ethnography, long characterized as a lower tier of evidence in studying drug use, find things other approaches miss?

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Pathways to Foster Employee Engagement Towards Sustainability

How can organizations get their members to engage in sustainability practices? The authors outlines several mechanisms.

coil of measuring tape

On Measuring What We Value 

If traditional filters of prestige are themselves steeped in a set of tacit values that may no longer adequately respect the modes of labor (or the laborers themselves), then when better to step back for a moment to ask what we are counting — and why?

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The Journal Citation Reports 2022 Are Out. What Do They Mean for Sociology?

One way or another, the Journal Citation Reports today play an outsized role in determining whose careers thrive and whose careers whither and which journals flourish or fade away.


Emancipating Women 

In this post, Holly Slay Ferraro, an associate professor in the Villanova School of Business and Academic Director for DEI […]

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