As a world-leading research university, we tackle some of the greatest challenges facing society. We are committed to ensuring that our research is making a positive difference to society and improving lives.

Our high-quality research brings together expertise from across disciplines to develop innovative solutions. We have identified five research areas we call beacons - addressing global inequalities, advanced materials, cancer, energy and industrial biotechnology - where the impact of our achievements are making a difference to everyday lives around the world.

Research and local communities

We are taking a lead on improving lives across many of our local communities in Manchester, Greater Manchester and the wider region. Alongside our research beacons a range of institutes and networks undertake research to make a difference across our region. Some examples of research to enhance the quality of life in our region include:

  • Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit
  • Inclusive Governance: Jam and Justice
  • Well North: unleashing health communities in the North
  • Multilingual Manchester
  • Collaborative Research on Ageing
  • Devo-Manc Hub

Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit

Supported by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, our Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit is an independent analytic resource aimed at making poverty reduction central to the growth and devolution agendas in Greater Manchester, and in other UK cities. IGAU works collaboratively with private, public and third sector representatives from across Greater Manchester to provide research, analysis and policy and practice guidance in order to support the achievement of more inclusive growth.

Inclusive Governance: Jam and Justice

Jam and Justice is an action research project investigating how to create more inclusive and just governance arrangements. The Universities of Sheffield, Manchester and Birmingham and the Greater Manchester Centre for Voluntary Organisation (GMCVO) are using live demonstrator projects to test different social innovations in decentralised governance. The projects will be co-designed by community research partners in an Action Research Cooperative (ARC) across Greater Manchester.

Well North: unleashing health communities in the North

Supported by Public Health England, The University of Manchester and the Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, Well North is creating a movement to unleash healthy communities across the North of England. Starting in ten places, it is inspiring change by backing real people and local ideas. Led by social entrepreneur Lord Andrew Mawson and chief executive Sam Tunney, its focus is on delivering grassroots projects that have a lasting impact on people’s lives.

Multilingual Manchester

Language and cultural diversity is a permanent feature of all major cities around the world, and Manchester is no exception. Using our world class research into languages and linguistics, Multilingual Manchester promotes awareness of language diversity in the city-region and beyond. Students are an integral part of our work, undertaking a range of practically-orientated research projects for the benefit of local communities. Multilingual Manchester works with local government, healthcare providers, police and emergency services, schools and community initiatives to co-design research and to share good practice.

Collaborative Research on Ageing

MICRA - The Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing - supports a community of over 100 active academics, bringing together international experts and leading researchers working across the field of ageing. MICRA is situated in Manchester, the UK's first city to achieve World Health Organization age-friendly status. We engage critically with stakeholders and policy makers at all levels and embed contributions from older people and stakeholders into all stages of research. MICRA is part of the Greater Manchester Ageing Hub, tasked with bringing together plans to support local older people.

Devo-Manc Hub

The Devo Manc Hub hub brings together work from across the University of Manchester on “Devo Manc”. The public policy reforms create a unique experiment within the UK with potentially far reaching academic and practical consequences. Observing this set of experiments in real-time and from a number of different disciplinary perspectives will generate findings and results that will be of interest to academic and other users of research, locally, nationally and internationally.