Collaborative Success Stories: Broad Impacts
The Broader Impacts Network helps University of Missouri researchers develop and implement high-quality outreach projects.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) and other funding agencies award research grants based on factors such as intellectual merit (benefit to science) and broader impact (benefit to society). Researchers are often tasked with demonstrating their project’s significance and may also be asked to include community outreach as part of the proposal.
The Broader Impacts Network (BIN) was established in 2012 to support researchers in creating, implementing, and evaluating broader impacts activities to help them qualify for funding. In addition to working with individual researchers, BIN also provides training and fosters relationships with collaborators to help researchers implement their broader impacts plans.
BIN also has broader impacts of its own. The inaugural Broader Impacts Summit, hosted by MU in 2013, led to the formation of a national community of practice around broader impacts support. In a 2014 special publication about broader impacts, the NSF recognized MU for “taking a lead role in demonstrating the feasibility of an institutional approach to broader impacts infrastructure.” Researchers who work with BIN are funded by the NSF at almost twice the national rate. And in its first five years of operation, BIN helped bring in $5 million in revenue to MU.
The Broader Impacts Network is directed by Dr. Susan Renoe.
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