Skill Spotlight: Communicating Research Impact


Welcome to this week’s HDR Development Bulletin.

This week’s topic builds on the idea of your professional branding strategy but this time the focus is on your research footprint.

Scholarly outputs such as publishing articles or presenting your work at a conference are an important part of your footprint that are valued by the academic community. Bibliometrics and alternative metrics associated with these outputs then become a key part of your story to show impact.* However, the nuances and reach of your research footprint do not have to be limited to scholarly outputs. So instead of focusing on just one skill this week, we are exploring all things research communication and impact. Within the REST program, ideas relating to this are captured by the graduate attribute “effective research communication.”

Effective research communication is crucial for ensuring that your findings can be understood, valued, and used widely. This means thinking beyond standard academic communication channels when sharing your research. Really the heart of effective communication is about being able to engage in discourse that allows the value of your research to be visible, understood and valued beyond academia. Can it be shared in ways that show how it can:

  • be readily translated into practical industry applications
  • influence policy decisions
  • align to the priorities of various funding bodies (i.e. communicated with a clear value proposition)
  • or just understood by your friends and family.

Humans are naturally drawn to stories, so during your candidature, spend some time learning how to craft a compelling narrative around your research. Also invest some time thinking about where to best disseminate your story and how to engage relevant audiences with it. This might be things like participating in competitions like the 3MT (2024 registrations are open!), sharing your work on social media, or sharing your elevator pitch during networking events.

If you would benefit from some training in research communication, consider the following opportunities:

Course Date
Social Media for Researchers Wednesday, 8th November 2023
The Power of Visual Storytelling: How to Share your Research Through Videos Tuesday, 21st November 2023
Media Training for Researchers with the Australian Science Media Centre (AusSMC) Thursday, 30th November 2023

*To learn more about leveraging your metrics, consider attending the November 14th Understanding and Using your Research Metrics workshop by the Flinders Library.

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GA6: Effective Research Communication