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Achieving wider impact in business and management: analysing the case studies from REF 2014

Hughes, Tim; Webber, Don; O'Regan, Nicholas


Tim Hughes
Professor in Applied Marketing

Don Webber

Nicholas O'Regan


© 2017, © 2017 Society for Research into Higher Education. Universities, across the globe, are increasingly judged on social and economic impact. An important initiative in the UK is the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, which assessed the wider impact of university research. The Impact Case Studies, produced for REF 2014, provide a rich new source of information to explore the wider impact of Business and Management (B&M) research. Each B&M case study, from a structured sample of 194, was read and analysed for this paper. The detailed findings show significant differences between sub-disciplines in demonstrating impact and illustrate why some research reaches a wider audience. The findings show a relatively low level of Mode 2 knowledge production, but a wide range of levels and types of engagement with research users across disciplines. The implications of the findings are discussed in relation to building a more nuanced theory on modes of knowledge production and in relation to policy and academic practice.


Hughes, T., Webber, D., & O'Regan, N. (2019). Achieving wider impact in business and management: analysing the case studies from REF 2014. Studies in Higher Education, 44(4), 628-642.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 5, 2017
Online Publication Date Oct 26, 2017
Publication Date Apr 3, 2019
Journal Studies in Higher Education
Print ISSN 0307-5079
Electronic ISSN 1470-174X
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 44
Issue 4
Pages 628-642
Keywords engagement, research impact, rigour and relevance, policy and practice
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Studies in Higher Education on 26th October 2017, available online:


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