How and why the Research Impact Assessment Platform came into being
In 2007, the MRC identified a need to improve the evidence of progress across its portfolio. At that time, the MRC largely relied upon researchers volunteering details of achievements arising from MRC funded work each year, a process which identified a few hundred reports, mostly research publications, and clearly could not do justice to the impact of MRC funded work.
Working alongside the Medical Research Council (MRC) in 2008/09, the Researchfish founders designed a new service called e-Val, to assist with MRC data gathering, research tracking and measurement of grant impacts.
In the first six months alone, fifteen funding organisations, and over 6,500 researchers signed up for the service, with membership expanding rapidly to include both the largest and smallest research funders.
In 2012 a federated version of Researchfish was launched, following a focus on developing a standard set of consistent common outcomes. A further 18 funders joined, proving the outcomes suited all public funders and NGOs, across all research disciplines.
The university (RO) interface was launched to enable universities to view and report on the outputs of the researchers employed at their institutes and universities, and among the first to use the service were University of Nottingham, University of Oxford, Imperial College London and University College London.
In 2014, all seven research councils in the UK join Researchfish, making the outcome types multidisciplinary. Since the founding of Researchfish Ltd in 2011, its scope and stakeholder community has experienced global expansion across the UK, into continental Europe and North America and as of March 2016, that research community consists of over 100,000 researchers reporting in, over 110 research organisations tracking outcomes on 100,000 awards and over £45 billion worth of funding.
See the full list of members here.