IMPACT is a £15 million UK centre for implementing evidence in adult social care. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Health Foundation. Our Leadership Team is made up of 13 individuals, led by Professor Jon Glasby at the University of Birmingham. This team includes academics, people who draw on care and support, and policy and practice partners. We have also involved a broader consortium of key stakeholders from across both, the sector, and the four nations of the UK. On this page, you will learn about the mission, beliefs, and values that guide our work.

Our mission

IMPACT believes that ‘good support isn’t just about ‘services’ – it’s about having a life.

In pursuit of this vision of adult social care, key objectives for the centre are to enable practical improvements on the ground and make a crucial contribution to longer-term cultural change by:

  • Increasing the use of high-quality evidence, leading to better care practices, systems and outcomes
  • Building capacity and skills in the adult social care workforce to work with evidence of different kinds to innovate and deliver better outcomes
  • Developing relationships between a wide range of stakeholders across the sector, to improve outcomes for people who draw on services and their families
  • Improving understanding of what elements of evidence implementation do and do not work in practice, and using this to overcome barriers 

To do this, IMPACT is collaborating with existing adult social care policy and practice partners. IMPACT’s work will also be embedded locally, regionally, nationally and across the UK.

Our core beliefs

  • How we design and deliver adult social care can be improved by drawing on evidence of what works
  • ‘Evidence’ should include different types of research evidence, as well as the lived experience of people using services and their carers, and the practice knowledge of social care staff
  • Adult social care is very fragmented. We stand the best chance of making a difference if we find ways to come together to work on common problems and solutions
  • Different groups of people have different levels of power, and some voices are heard less often than others.  We believe trying to hear as many different voices as possible and to reduce traditional power imbalances is not only morally right, but will also maximise the evidence and expertise available to us to make a difference

Our work

IMPACT seeks to:

  • Provide practical support to implement evidence in the realities of everyday life and front-line services
  • Overcome the limitations of previous approaches in a diverse, fragmented and under-funded sector
  • Bring key stakeholders together to co-design our work in inclusive and diverse ‘IMPACT Assemblies’ (based in all four nations of the UK to reflect different policy and practice contexts)
  • Work over three phases of development (‘co-design’, ‘establishment’ and ‘delivery’) to build a centre that becomes a permanent feature of the adult social care landscape

IMPACT is currently in its delivery phase, which will run from 2023 to 2027. IMPACT’s key projects, delivery models and work programme have been refined during the establishment phase, through six pilot projects within four delivery models. These pilots will end in 2023, with learnings and outcomes shared, and a range of new projects will begin.

Our Values


Reciprocity over time and ‘showing not telling’ the outcome of people’s involvement in an honest and transparent way


Co-production takes time and effort. We recognise the commitment of participants and will pay for time devoted (where people are not already funded)


Hearing ‘seldom heard’ voices, working with marginalised communities and recognising intersectionality

Being Embedded

Committed to working with existing networks and groups to identify the significance of local contexts


Our approach emphasizes partnership and co-production across the adult social care sector, not competition

Theory of Change

IMPACT’s work is underpinned by its theory of change. That’s an approach that sets out what we’re trying to achieve and how we’re going about trying to achieve those things. With a centre like IMPACT, though, the outcomes are often very long-term. So, theories of change often set out short, medium, and longer-term outputs. These are things that you would see if the centre as a whole was starting to head in the right direction.

‘Theory of Change’ (Video)

Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion

IMPACT is committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive learning and working environment. Our aim is for all members of IMPACT to flourish and reach their full potential. Our environment should engage with and learn from adult social care in all its diversity. It should also be where we affect positive change within IMPACT, adult social care, and wider society.

We see this as key to the achievement of our strategic objectives and integral to our mission and values. We will do this by:

  • Creating an inclusive environment
  • Dismantling barriers
  • Integrating equality, diversity, and inclusion in everything we do
  • Building principles into annual staff appraisals
  • Piloting ‘the Rooney rule’ in all recruitment
  • Ensuring adequate diversity is represented on interview panels