NBS research has wide and varied benefits on the economy, society, culture, policy, health, and quality of life — both within the UK and overseas. Our impact cases, which were all classed as world leading and internationally excellent in terms of their originality significance and rigour in REF2021, are the perfect testimony of these benefits.

These impact cases champion the diverse range of consistently high quality work at NBS, which includes delivering benefits for small businesses, for example by showing how they could improve the supplier/retailer relationship and protect themselves from a product de-listing project launched by Tesco, seeking to reduce the number of its products by 15% per annum over the following three years.

Our work has also helped some of the largest employers in the UK realise the importance of the mental health of their staff, shaping organisational well-being programmes for the NHS, Civil Service, and police forces across England and Wales, and influencing Government policy frameworks and internationally recognised industry standards.

Beyond these direct industry impacts, NBS research benefits consumers through impacting on how public policies and regulations are formed. Guided by NBS research findings on household energy consumption, UK regulators developed a new understanding of consumer behaviour and the role inactive consumers who did not ‘shop around’ for a better deal played in the dynamics of the market. This research has provided vital information for the design of new regulations for the energy market.

Finally, our colleagues at NBS have contributed to a more efficient operation of public organisations and regulators. Some of this work has informed a rethink in organisational practice and culture in both bodies, resulting in greater self-awareness and an openness to change within the European Council Secretariat. On a different front, research by NBS colleagues has contributed to a more rigorous regulatory approach to evaluating competition policy (laws and policies in place to foster market competition for the benefit of consumers), one which has been adopted by the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OCED), the European Commission, and several other national authorities.

Supermarket aisle

Small scale food and drink businesses impact case study

Light bulb

Reducing household energy prices impact case study

EU building

Modernising EU organisational structures/HR practices impact case study

Enhancing workplace wellbeing impact case study

Newton's cradle

Competition policy impact case study