9: Writing up, publication and impact

This chapter outlines how to write up and disseminate research findings and research resources. We discuss how to develop and disseminate information such as research data in a more accessible format, whether through conferences, publication as books or journal articles, or through public outreach in other formats.

In many ways, this chapter braids together the various strands of themes discussed so far. In Chapter 3 we mentioned that lack of transparency and lack of obvious benefit are some of the factors negatively influencing participants’ willingness to participate in research, and we suggested making research findings available to participants once the study has been completed. But we need to look not only at our current but also potential future participants: making findings available to the public, that is, not only through the usual academic channels, can help to make the research process more transparent and improve trust in the institution. In a sense, accessibility is about making research findings easy to find, and easy to understand, and we will talk about some of the ways in which that can be done. But we also talk about accessibility in the sense mostly used in this book. If we are making our research and our findings available, what is the best way to present the information so that as many people as possible can access it? In this context, we refer back to Chapters 6 and 7.

Accountability describes the researcher’s responsibilities to their employer, research funders and stakeholders, as well as to research participants. It means that research must be conducted, delivered and disseminated according to professional standards and best practice.

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