The University of Leicester receives further £1.25 million to fund world-leading social sciences research

University of Leicester has been awarded an additional £1.25 million by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to support its world-leading social sciences research.

The ESRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) will enable social scientists at the University of Leicester to collaborate with businesses, policymakers and communities to address challenges in society and make a real-world difference.

The award has been announced by ESRC following a competitive peer-reviewed process and allows the University of Leicester to build on the successful programme of activities it has delivered as a result of the previous round of ERSC IAA funding.

The previous round benefitted over 250 academics and PhD students across the institution and enabled the public to engage with social science research through several projects.

University of Leicester developed a flagship partnership with the National Trust to support its Everyone Welcome programme, which is intended to ensure that everyone feels welcome visiting, working or volunteering with the Trust and includes the sharing of stories from underrepresented communities.

The partnership led to the development of a film showcasing 10 previously untold stories of disability from across Trust sites and collections with artist Chris Samuel.

The University is also working with the University of the West Indies to tackle the modern-day reproduction of the colonial-era pattern of incarcerating prisoners before trial.

In another project, researchers have explored how political cartooning could help young people make meaning of their experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic.

University of Leicester research has allowed children, youth and families in South Africa and Pakistan better access to mental health provision.

Research by University of Leicester has also helped to amplify the voices of women affected by conflicts and make them heard by targeted change makers.

The next round of ESRC funding (2023-2028) will directly contribute to the University of Leicester’s strategic aims by maximising the reach and significance of its social sciences research.

Professor Philip Baker, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise said: “As a University is driven to deliver world-changing research, we are absolutely delighted to have been awarded a £1.25m Impact Acceleration Account by the Economic and Social Research Council. 

“Following on from our successful Round 2 award this new five-year award will continue to support social scientists at the University of Leicester to change lives through research and make a real-world impact through collaboration and engagement with non-academic users of our research.

“Today’s announcement that we have been awarded a further £1.25m Impact Acceleration Account by the Economic and Social Research Council in a competitive call shows that the ESRC are confident that social scientists at the University of Leicester can continue to deliver significant non-academic benefits locally, nationally and internationally.

“We look forward to working with social science academics and non-academic partners to create positive impacts from our research and knowledge.”

To find out more about the ESRC IAA award at the University of Leicester visit or contact