Making the Case for Academic and Social Impact in Organizational Communication Research Chapter uri icon


  • Engaged scholarship begins with the premise that academic research cannot only be rigorous, but also have social impact by addressing important organizational and community issues. A tacit assumption in much of the literature on engaged organizational communication scholarship is that we have a clear understanding of what we mean by social impact. This chapter explores how various indicators and metrics constitute the meaning of academic and social impact. I argue that there is relatively little overlap in the indicators that are currently used to assess academic and social impact and that this poses important challenges for organizational communication scholars who wish to do engaged scholarship. Five practices are offered to facilitate organizational communication scholars determine the kind of impact they wish to make and manage the challenges posed by the competing demands of demonstrating academic and social impact: (1) connect with your scholarly passion, (2) practice triple translation, (3) develop emergent design skills, (4) go big, and (5) research on the go.

author list (cited authors)

  • Barge, J. K.

complete list of authors

  • Barge, J Kevin

Book Title

  • Transformative Practice and Research in Organizational Communication

publication date

  • July 2018