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Knowledge Exchange Unit

We support the exchange of information and expertise between researchers and the UK Parliament. Working with higher education and beyond, we facilitate and strengthen this exchange of knowledge in a variety of ways.

Resources and support we offer

  • A first point of contact for any researcher wishing to work with or find out more about UK Parliament
  • Online training through our series of webinars for researchers and knowledge mobilisers
  • @UKParl_Research Twitter feed, bringing together opportunities, information and advice for researchers and a platform to interact with teams across UK Parliament
  • Online resources about why and how to engage with UK Parliament

Building understanding and supporting researchers to engage

  • In 2017, we conducted a survey to better understand academics’ perceptions of barriers to engaging with Parliament. The biggest barrier was lack of knowledge or guidance on how to engage, whilst other barriers included lack of confidence, time or support. In response to the survey findings, we continually take action to support researchers.
  • We are working to strengthen and diversify relationships between UK Parliament and networks and organisations in the research community
  • We are working to support researchers to engage with UK Parliament through providing support and resources (see above)
  • We are liaising with Research England around its Future Research Assessment Programme and Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF), to ensure understanding and recognition of knowledge exchange and impact in legislatures

We are continually working to understand the barriers faced by researchers in policy engagement, and what action Parliament and others can take to support diverse and inclusive engagement between Parliament and researchers.

Our work with fellow knowledge mobilisers

We have a growing network of knowledge mobilisers, such as university KE staff, impact officers, policy managers, or academic librarians. They are also policy-focused intermediaries in organisations such as learned societies or professional bodies. We work with this network to support researcher engagement, communicate key opportunities and information around engaging with Parliament, and understand the priorities, needs and challenges of the research sector. If you occupy one of these roles, we would love you to join our network: please email us on keu@parliament.uk to let us know you'd like to join.   

Increasing the effectiveness of our work

  • We are keen to increase the effectiveness of our work, and frequently draw on insights from the social science and practitioner literature as well as learnings from the many and diverse individuals and organisations we engage with.
  • We are always keen to hear from those who have insights around effective KE and impact practices, so do feel free to get in touch. 
  • Currently, we are working with Dr Sandra Messenger (Knowledge Exchange Manager at Cranfield University), who is conducting a Parliamentary Academic Fellowship with us to help us understand and improve our digital knowledge exchange activity

Report: a review of the first two years of the KEU and our 2020-2021 strategy

In September 2020, the KEU turned two. To celebrate this, we have produced a report looking at our evolution and achievements in collaboration with researchers, knowledge mobilisers, universities and other organisations over the past two years. The report also lays out our strategy and priorities for 2020-2021. You can read the report here: Celebrating two years of the Knowledge Exchange Unit in UK Parliament: our achievements, learnings and next steps.

Contact us

For more information about the Knowledge Exchange Unit, or advice on working with UK Parliament as a researcher, contact the Knowledge Exchange team on keu@parliament.uk

  • Dr Sarah Foxen, Knowledge Exchange Lead 
  • Naomi Saint, Knowledge Exchange Manager 
  • Dr Laura Webb, Knowledge Exchange Manager

Feedback on this webhub

This research impact hub is continually evolving, so if you have ideas on how we can improve it, do drop us a line.

In particular, we are working to ensure this webhub is as accessible as possible, including work to improve the alt-text. If you have any feedback for us on this, or any other aspect of the accessibility of the webhub or the webhub more generally, please feel free to email keu@parliament.uk, and we will be very pleased to hear from you.