A reactive attitude toward impact:
The assumption that the lack of evidence for impact is evidence for lack of impact permeates Whitehall and the Swindon-based research councils charged with funding science.
The research councils continue to demand impact statements with their grant applications, a requirement that can only reward the most mundane research or those scientists most able to dissemble or exaggerate.
The assumptions that impact is impossible to demonstrate and that having to think about impact is necessarily a deal with the devil permeate this article.
Is it really too much to ask that scientists use their creativity to leverage the demand for ‘impact statements’ to demonstrate that, at the very least, they’ve given some thought to the matter of whether and how their science matters to someone other than them? If so, then get ready for deep cuts in research funding.