Impact Acceleration Account Logo

EPSRC and AHRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) Open Call - Now open

Funding to promote impact acceleration projects across arts & humanities and engineering & physical sciences. This call is not interdisciplinary but there is a single application process across both the AHRC and EPSRC remits. See: March 2024 Open IAA Call

'Light Up Lancaster’ Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) Call - Now open

An IAA call is currently open that enables research to reach and benefit audiences at a light art festival, featuring as part of 'Light Up Lancaster 2024’ (LUL24) an after-dark multi-artform light arts trail across the city. See: AHRC/EPSRC IAA Light Up Lancaster Call

Eight interdisciplinary projects were awarded funding through the autumn 2023 joint IAA call across the arts & humanities and engineering & physical sciences.

Summaries of the 8 projects awarded IAA funding

Our Research Council IAAs

Click on the logo to find out more about each of Lancaster's Impact Acceleration Accounts.

What is an Impact Acceleration Account (IAA)?

IAAs are strategic awards provided to institutions to support knowledge exchange (KE) and impact from their research. IAAs allow Research Organisations to respond to opportunities in flexible, responsive and creative ways, aligned to their institutional strategies and opportunities. Responsibility for management of IAAs is devolved to the institution to operate tailored schemes to facilitate the realisation of impact. The awards are intended to add value to existing funding and take advantage of new or unforeseen opportunities. IAAs are one of the funding mechanisms for supporting knowledge exchange, innovation and impact at UK Research and Innovation.

Responsive Mode IAA Applications

Across all of Lancaster’s Impact Acceleration Accounts, we try to be as flexible as possible in meeting the needs of Principle Investigators and their project ideas. Typically, we average a formal ‘Call’ for project applications twice in any twelve-month period and can receive as many as thirty submissions to each.

However, we recognise that, on occasion, either an opportunity arises which is time-bound such that it could not wait for the next ‘Call’ or there were valid reasons why the deadline for the previous ‘Call’ may have been missed. In such cases we are prepared to consider a very limited number of applications under our ‘Responsive Mode’, but this is under continual review based on our available IAA budget. For further details, see IAA Responsive Mode.

Collaborations that count

Listen to Lancaster University's Impact Acceleration Account managers and some of our project researchers and partners discuss the role of Impact Acceleration Account funding.

View transcript

Melanie Burton: It could be Blackburn, it could be Fleetwood as far as Sierra Leone globally, but it's only a small amount, but it makes a really big difference.

Mark Bowen: The difference can be felt at a local/regional level, at a national level, across the UK. But in many cases it has a global effect.

Dr Sam Murphy: People talk about the energy crisis and the climate crisis whereby we need to reduce our carbon emissions. We're going to be battling the climate forever. It's not going to be over by 2050. We're going to need to constantly be worried about what we're emitting.
Now fusion, has no carbon emissions.

Dr Mark Spencer: Fleetwood as a community, for a long time was looking backwards, to the past. We recognize the past and we're very proud of the past as a community, but we are much more hopeful and that sense of hope is really, really beneficial.

Melanie Burton: Impact Acceleration Accounts, IAAs, are UKRI investments that are awarded to universities for knowledge exchange activities. That's really taking research out into the real world.

And we're able to do that in a very flexible way with our researchers, in a way that's meaningful for our institution, for our region, and nationally.

An amazing thing is that with knowledge exchange, is it's like seeing how research can be translated into other sectors, into other domains. So, yeah, the researchers will say themselves, you can start out with a research problem or a question and you don't know where it's going to lead. And I think that's the amazing thing that we've supported.

Mark Bowen: Serendipity always plays a part in developing any relationship. The money is there simply to help that relationship. It's not the be-all and end-all.

Professor Charlotte Baker: The Impact Acceleration Account funding has helped me to collaborate with different partners in Africa to bring people together, to bring together stakeholders in various meetings and networks that have enabled them to exchange their knowledge and expertise as well. So it's been really, really important to my work.

Professor Rob Young: EPSRC's Impact Acceleration Account has been a really efficient way of leveraging the funding that we've managed to raise through the company. So essentially, it's an act of taking a small amount from the commercial pot and magnifying it as much as possible. And that's kind of one of the primary aims of the Impact Acceleration Account, to leverage that kind of funding.

And it's been amazing. So obviously it gives us access to the facilities here at the university, but it also means that we don't need to raise as much money, to rely on other people quite so much. So it's giving us freedom. It's accelerated the scientific development, er you know, it puts the R in R and D and allows us to develop a really exciting new technology.

Mark Bowen: The reality is that these are projects that will impact people's lives in a very positive manner. Some of that impact may be felt very, very rapidly, as in the case of Fleetwood. However, it could be ten or 20 years down the line in terms of the work we're doing with Tokamak Energy about fusion fuels for power.

Melanie Burton: We're here supporting researchers, who are researchers, they're also educationalists, being able to help them to actually engage and work with other organisations. I think that's the exciting thing and I think it is very rewarding.

I'm Mel Burton and I've worked on the ESRC Impact Acceleration Account. It's been an amazing experience working in the social sciences at Lancaster University.

Mark Bowen: I'm Mark Bowen. I'm the Business Gateway Manager, and as part of that role I have operational management on a day-to-day basis of the EPSRC IAA Funding. It's the people that make the difference, whether it be the researcher or the partner, whether they be in business, public sector or the third sector, making the difference through people.

Narrator: From local to global, collaborations that count.

Contact Us

For more information about our UKRI Impact Acceleration Funds click on the relevant logo at the top of the page or contact Mark Bowen (EPSRC) or Jamie Hodge (EPSRC & AHRC)

Jamie Hodge

Jamie Hodge

Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) Partnership Development Manager

Mark Bowen

Mark Bowen

Business Gateway Manager