CREAF’s mission is to generate knowledge to understand nature, identify potential threats, and develop solutions to address environmental and climate challenges at local, national, and global level.

CREAF is deeply committed to promoting a culture of impact in research and to fostering the mobilization, uptake and use of its research findings in the non-academic world to deliver positive impact.

Download CREAF's impact dossier

What's impact for CREAF?

Impact includes:

  • Any kind of change (big or small, local or global, intended or unintended, instrumental or conceptual)
  • we can show (see, demonstrate, measure, capture)
  • beyond academia (affecting in a positive way society, the economy and the environment)
  • which happen because of the contribution of research.

Impact is ultimately about relationships and about connecting academic research to benefits in the real world.

CREAF values and acknowledges the importance of all the diversity of activities and collaborations needed along the process of generating impact (pathway to impact) without which the intended benefits could not be achieved. 

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Impact strategy at CREAF

CREAF is implementing its first institutional impact strategy to build staff competencies and awareness, to establish meaningful and productive connections with stakeholders, and to consistently plan, monitor and showcase the societal benefits of CREAF's research.

CREAF institution

To foster the mobilization and impact of research into the non-academic world as an institutional commitment and mission.


To build and nurture staff impact literacy and competencies.

Projects & research

To embed impact from the initial stages of research inception and analyze information on impact achieved by previous research.

Stakeholders & society

To establish direct and meaningful interaction with public administration, key stakeholders and citizens.

Tracking & visibility

To value, assess and give visibility to the benefits CREAF's research brings to society beyond academia.

CREAF's impact framework

CREAF has developed an impact framework that grants a comprehensive and thorough view of how and where CREAF contributes to making a difference in the world.  

It has been developed through an intense co-designed process involving scientific and technical staff, research managers and CREAF’s Direction taking into consideration all the research conducted at present in CREAF. 

The framework facilitates the promotion, management, and assessment of CREAF’s research impact.  

Download CREAF's impact framework

Model impact

Impact framework's FAQS:

What is a logic model?

A logic model is a graphic illustration of the relationship between project resources, activities planned, and its intended effects.

What is an impact pathway?

The logical steps towards achieving the expected impacts of a project over time and, in particular, beyond the duration of the project.

How to apply a logic model to research impact pathways?

From your planned research (inputs/activities) you obtain products of research which are the outputs. The awareness and use of these products happening in the short to medium term are the outcomes and the, typically long-term, consequences and changes resulting from this use are the impacts.

Why develop an impact framework?

Implementing an impact framework is part of creating an impact culture within CREAF helping to build a shared understanding of impact, establishing a common language, approach, and tools. The framework facilitates to recognize how impacts of CREAF’s research occur and where to look for them.

How does CREAF’s Impact Framework use the logic model approach?

CREAF’s impact framework is based on a logic model approach depicted as a simple linear process, nevertheless understanding that pathways to impact actually are multiple, non-linear and complex. In fact, impacts could happen in the short- or the long-term, and are often originated from accumulated and collaborative knowledge, i.e. rarely from specific research findings from individual researchers.

How does CREAF’s Impact Framework consider engagement?

One key element that underpins CREAF’s approach is ensuring quality engagement with non-academics at all stages of the impact pathway. This will enhance the adequacy and relevance of research results to be used by others, and thus, contribute to maximising impact.

What are the domains, depicted in the framework, where CREAF’s impact happens?

The framework includes a multidimensional categorisation of CREAF’s research impact that shows that CREAF’s impact happens in Policy, Practise, and the wider citizenship.

What are the types of impacts achieved by CREAF’s research?
  • capacity building impacts (e.g., improved ability to manage specific aspects of the natural environment by decision-makers and other stakeholders).
  • instrumental impacts (e.g., improvement of a specific environmental policy or management plan).
  • conceptual impacts (e.g., shape conceptual debate in the public about nature and environmental crisis).
What are the long-term impacts CREAF’s research contributes to?

Impacts very often are linked creating a cascading effect of change. As seen in the framework for CREAF those will eventually result in achieving improved health and state of natural ecosystems and improved well-being of society.

Does CREAF take into consideration potential negative impacts?

CREAF strives for generating positive impact, but also intends to understand the possible undesirable impacts of research.

What other steps is CREAF taking to capture impact?

Together with the framework, CREAF is implementing specific impact assessment activities, through diverse data collection tools to generate evidence for monitoring, evaluation, and communication purposes.

Contact Anabel Sánchez Plaza for more information!

Anabel SanchezAnabel Sánchez Plaza
Societal Impact officer