How does one get started?

The best strategy is to formulate a proposal with early attention to both intellectual merit and the broader impacts of the research. Ideally, the two criteria feed off one another and lead to creative ideas and new directions for research, dissemination, and outreach.

We know, however, that many PIs formulate a research plan first and then scramble to identify a suite of broader impacts to include in their proposal. While we hope that this website contributes to a culture of valuing BIs at earlier stages, our goal is to assist PIs at every stage of the process.

We suggest beginning by familiarizing yourself with the categories of suggested broader impacts, browsing a few examples, and then taking some time to brainstorm broader impact ideas for your project in EACH of the categories. After brainstorming (preferably in a group setting), take some time away from the list before returning to choose which ideas seem most promising and worth developing.

We encourage you to think creatively about broader impact activities, and consider areas of societal benefit. You have the opportunity to improve our world. Good luck!