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Research impact

Our researchers are working across disciplines to tackle major challenges facing society, the economy and the environment.

We rank 2nd in the UK for the impact of our research as measured in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, an outstanding achievement. With breakthroughs in areas such as Alzheimer's disease, breast cancer, nuclear waste disposal, school food reform and the tales of The Mabinogion, our research is making a positive and lasting impact around the world.

These case studies highlight just some of the areas we are delivering positive research impact:

Transforming the Mabinogion

Transforming the Mabinogion

Improving the understanding of Welsh myths and legends from the Mabinogion.

Changing rural policy in Wales

Changing rural policy in Wales

Research conducted by leading Cardiff University academics has helped shape and change rural welfare and development policies throughout Wales.

Saving heritage ironwork from the ravages of rust

Saving heritage ironwork from the ravages of rust

Studying effective corrosion cures to help our museums preserve ironwork for posterity.

Research rethinks disposal of nuclear waste

Research rethinks disposal of nuclear waste

Our pioneering computer simulations are helping engineer safer ways to store nuclear waste.

Saving lives and safeguarding water

Saving lives and safeguarding water

We are developing accurate and reliable models to safeguard people against global water risks.

Keeping business lean

We developed a training programme which has helped more than 200 organisations worldwide deliver continuous efficiency savings worth millions.

Influencing policy on river conservation and management

Influencing policy on river conservation and management

Our approaches to analysing and modelling water systems have led to a world-leading discovery showing change on upland river ecosystems.

Predicting molecular properties using advanced computing

Predicting molecular properties using advanced computing

Molpro is a software package that enables chemists to calculate from first principles the properties of molecular matter.

Supplying clean air to save lives

Supplying clean air to save lives

We are developing catalysts which remove deadly carbon monoxide from confined environments.

Environmentally friendly Perspex production

Environmentally friendly Perspex production

We developed a homogeneous catalyst to enable an environmentally friendly and efficient route for Perspex.

Improving control over illicit money flows and recovering the proceeds of crime

Improving control over illicit money flows and recovering the proceeds of crime

Research by Professor Mike Levi provides one of the first rigorous empirical analyses of the scale of financial crime.

Improving community policing

Improving community policing

Pioneering research by the Universities' Police Science Institute (UPSI) has made police more effective at understanding and responding to crime and disorder.

ASSIST: A stop smoking in schools trial

ASSIST: A stop smoking in schools trial

Our DECIPHer-ASSIST programme is effectively tackling smoking uptake in UK schools.

Conserving endangered species

Conserving endangered species

Our data driven conservation strategies are saving the lives of orangutans, elephants and pandas.

A clinical basis for identifying child abuse

A clinical basis for identifying child abuse

A pioneering research programme for more reliable clinical assessments of child abuse and neglect.

Why gold is the key to a glittering future

Why gold is the key to a glittering future

Our newly identified catalyst has the potential to save lives, improve health and clean up the environment.

Early warning of urinary catheter blockage

Early warning of urinary catheter blockage

How the development of a sensor helped enabled prediction of urinary catheter blockages, bringing relief to thousands of patients.

Reducing violent crime

Reducing violent crime

We are reducing violence through research, new use of data and original collaborations between medicine and criminal justice.

Using Australian tropical rainforests to help treat chronic wounds and scarring

Using Australian tropical rainforests to help treat chronic wounds and scarring

How collaborative research with industry is identifying and evaluating new wound healing therapies from trees indigenous to the Queensland's tropical rainforests.

Building a picture of population dental health

Building a picture of population dental health

How quality assured surveillance of population dental health has improved national targeting of oral health promotion, planning of health services and monitoring their effectiveness.

Improving public services

Improving public services

How better evidence production, synthesis and use has led to greater effectiveness and efficiency in public services.

Making bridges safer

Making bridges safer

Providing solutions for bridge inspection without the need for costly shutdowns.

Treating locally advanced prostate cancer

Treating locally advanced prostate cancer

Our researchers reveal the best technique for treating locally advanced prostate cancer.

Seeing the science in space

Seeing the science in space

Bringing stories from the Hershel Space Observatory to UK school children, teachers and international media.

Using maths to save lives

Using maths to save lives

Our new mathematical models are reducing waiting times in hospitals to save lives.

Reforming school food

Reforming school food

Helping to visualise a healthier, more sustainable school food service.

A clearer view for children with Down's Syndrome

A clearer view for children with Down's Syndrome

Improving educational opportunities and eye care for children with Down’s syndrome.

After the crash: influencing economic policy

After the crash: influencing economic policy

Developing new economic models to stimulate international recovery from the 2007 crash.

Precision performance

Precision performance

Revitalising the techniques and performance style of music from the 'long 18th century'.

Tackling the challenge of tiredness at sea

Tackling the challenge of tiredness at sea

How our research into tiredness has helped create better policies and safer systems for mariners.

Finding the faults in caprocks

Finding the faults in caprocks

Our research has allowed oil and gas companies to understand how faulted caprocks behave under specific geological conditions.

Indexing the world's species

Indexing the world's species

Using big data to help save flora and fauna from extinction.

Cities and buildings of the future

Cities and buildings of the future

We have developed advanced computational numerical models that are used in the design of major buildings and urban developments.

Does size matter in local government?

Does size matter in local government?

Exploring how local authorities deliver services and whether their size will be relevant in the future.

A legal framework to unite a faith

A legal framework to unite a faith

Solving the conundrum of greater cooperation and house rules within the church.

Understanding Englishness

Understanding Englishness

Examining who we are amid constant political change.

Valuing Victorians: sharing 19th Century illustrations

Valuing Victorians: sharing 19th Century illustrations

Using research-based metadata to entertain a modern audience of millions.

Improving end of life decision making

Improving end of life decision making

Our research stimulated debate about the treatment of people in vegetative and minimally conscious states.

Improving pastoral care for Muslims

Improving pastoral care for Muslims

The positive effect of involving Muslim religious professionals in providing religious and pastoral care in public institutions.

The changing identity of Welsh emigrants

The changing identity of Welsh emigrants

Research reveals how the identity of Welsh migrants changed as they adapted to new cultures.

Influencing debate in genetics research

Influencing debate in genetics research

Defining a new bioethics that promises real world solutions to real world problems.

Prompting action on climate change

Prompting action on climate change

Research has revealed a 'governance trap' hindering action on climate change.

Cannabis use and schizophrenia

Cannabis use and schizophrenia

Is cannabis use linked to schizophrenia?

Cardiff-led research underpins new treatment and management of acquired haemophilia A

Defining the standard of care for acquired haemophilia A

Reflecting post-devolution politics in broadcasting

Reflecting post-devolution politics in broadcasting

Our researchers found citizens were being routinely misinformed about major areas of policy.

Reframing language law in Wales

Reframing language law in Wales

A need for clarity, consistency and compliance in Welsh Language regulation.

Improving the response to victims of violence

Improving the response to victims of violence

Our research has contributed to significant changes in the services afforded to victims of domestic and sexual violence.

Chemiluminescent techology underpins global adoption of tests for infectious diseases

Chemiluminescent techology underpins global adoption of tests for infectious diseases

Research has led to the development of blood screening and clinical tests that have been adopted worldwide for the detection of viruses and bacteria.

Translation research shapes Buddhist practice in Germany

Translation research shapes Buddhist practice in Germany

Our pioneering research into the translation of a sacred Buddhist text has influenced contemporary Buddhist practice in Germany.

Fairer compensation for victims of personal injury accidents

Fairer compensation for victims of personal injury accidents

Research from Cardiff Business School highlights under-compensation for injured claimants, and points towards a fairer means of compensation for injury victims.

Values research changes focus of charitable campaigns

Values research changes focus of charitable campaigns

Our research has fundamentally changed how charities approach environmental-based marketing campaigns

The real economic and environmental impact of tourism in Wales

The real economic and environmental impact of tourism in Wales

New research helps us understand the true value of tourism in the country.

Diagnosis of gluten sensitivity-related neurological dysfunction

Diagnosis of gluten sensitivity-related neurological dysfunction

How the identification of a disease biomarker has led to the development of a new diagnostic procedure.

Fighting the rise of the superbug

Fighting the rise of the superbug

Discovery of a new antibiotic resistant gene by Cardiff University researchers changes global attitude and policy to monitoring and prevention.

Strategic metals: Exploring and processing platinum group elements

Strategic metals: Exploring and processing platinum group elements

Our research and analysis is improving the exploration of new Platinum Group Elements (PGE) deposits and developing more efficient processing of PGE ores.

Creating new anti-viral and cancer drugs

Creating new anti-viral and cancer drugs

ProTide technology is a pro-drug strategy with proven capacity to generate new drug candidates for nucleoside-based antiviral and anti-cancer indications.

Improving the effectiveness of inhaled medicines

Improving the effectiveness of inhaled medicines

New research offers hope to millions of people who suffer from respiratory illnesses.

Discovering the world's most powerful antiviral agent against shingles

Discovering the world's most powerful antiviral agent against shingles

FV-100 is a brand new anti-viral drug that aims to bring relief to millions of shingle sufferers from around the world.

Meeting the challenges of data security

Meeting the challenges of data security

Our research has significantly improved the security of printing and network environments.

Understanding consumer behaviour

Understanding consumer behaviour

We have developed important statistical and mathematical models for forecasting consumer buying behaviour.

More than Messiaen

More than Messiaen

Reinterpreting 20th-Century French musical traditions for UK audiences.

Improving HIV/AIDS education and support through comics writing

Improving HIV/AIDS education and support through comics writing

Workshops in comics drawing at the Whizzkids United academy in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa helped teenagers to express their feelings.

Promoting prudent prescribing of antibiotics for dental problems in primary care

Promoting prudent prescribing of antibiotics for dental problems in primary care

Reducing unnecessary prescribing to minimise the emergence of antimicrobial resistant bacteria.

Addressing poor oral health in Wales

Addressing poor oral health in Wales

Developing initiatives aimed at improving oral health and delivering dental care.

Improving treatment of cystic fibrosis with seaweed

Improving treatment of cystic fibrosis with seaweed

Developing new therapies to tackle life-threatening, drug-resistant bacterial lung infections.

The Living Wage – Employer experience

The Living Wage – Employer experience

Understanding the motivations, challenges and opportunities of becoming an accredited living wage employer.

Using social media to manage large scale events

Using social media to manage large scale events

How software tools provided real-time information to police during the 2014 NATO summit in South Wales.

City of music

City of music

Understanding the music of Vienna as a product of the city.

Lace Project

Lace Project

LACE: Improving educational experiences and attainment of looked after children.

Lace Project

LACE: Improving educational experiences and attainment of looked after children

Developing measures of poverty

Developing measures of poverty

Helping governments monitor progress towards the global Sustainable Development Goals for poverty and nutrition.

School Health Research Network

School Health Research Network

Improving young people’s health and wellbeing in schools.

Supporting dental practices to make best use of the whole dental team

Supporting dental practices to make best use of the whole dental team

Developing self-evaluation tools to review skill-mix in dental teams.

Digi-Languages

Digi-Languages

Digi-Languages is an online experience which encourages its users, year 9 school pupils, to engage in questions which challenge mono-lingual and mono-cultural perceptions.

Improving how healthcare employees raise concerns

Improving how healthcare employees raise concerns

We are helping develop and implement approaches that support healthcare organisations and policy makers to best enable staff to raise and respond to workplace concerns.

SignatureBack: interactive digital interventions

SignatureBack: interactive digital interventions

Interactive digital interventions to support individualised self-management of low back pain.

Views of an Antique Land

Views of an Antique Land

A new online visual archive presents the little known Egypt and Palestine theatre of the First World War, as it was seen through the eyes of British soldiers.

Embedding infection prevention in everyday patient care

Embedding infection prevention in everyday patient care

Non-antibiotic approaches to preventing healthcare-associated infection and reducing risks of antimicrobial resistance.