Research Clusters and Impact

We don't just do research, we make something happen with our research. By engaging with local businesses, charities and partners, we produce research which has immediate impact on society. Our research clusters are a key aspect to making this happen.

EMpoWER Research Cluster

Exercise Medicine & Wellbeing

The vision of the EMpoWER team is to create a culture of seeing physical activity and exercise as therapy. We aim to achieve this using a patient-centred approach combining collaboration between universities, healthcare trusts, local authorities and private and voluntary sector organisations, bringing together research, education and clinical services. We also seek alternative and more efficient routes to extend the reach of sport and exercise medicine by enhancing the synergy between sport scientists and exercise medicine specialists as well as allied health care providers, researchers, academics, clinicians and patients in an innovative and community focused nucleus.


SSLD Research Cluster

Sustainable Sport & Leisure Development

SSLD is an inter-disciplinary research unit that focuses on the management of the economic, environmental, and social impacts of sport and leisure. It considers the balancing of interrelated purposes in strategies that use sport and leisure as a tool for development, and the recognition of the best means for the realization of sustainable outcomes. This is addressed through the incorporation of sport and leisure services into the holistic policy framework of sustainable development. Our research is industry-driven underpinned by cutting-edge conceptual development providing critical evaluations and evidence-based studies aimed at enabling the role of sport and leisure in enhancing individual and community well-being.



REAP Research Cluster

Rehabilitation & Performance

REAP focuses on human performance, speech and language science and disorders, musculoskeletal biomechanics, the optimization of sports and human performance and rehabilitation in people with musculoskeletal as well as those with speech, language, communication, voice or swallowing disorders. We collaborate with our partners in NHS and universities in UK, Europe and Australia.

Our research involves biomechanics studies and clinical trials to increase understanding of the musculoskeletal system and to optimise the function of joints, bone, muscle and cartilage and diseases resulting from problems with musculoskeletal structure and function. We also conduct research and development to improve the care and management of people with speech, language, voice or communication disorders. Our research focuses on non-surgical solutions and aim to translate research into improved health outcomes.


ACE Research Cluster

Agency, Context & Education

The vision of the ACE research cluster is to honour the founding mission of Plymouth Marjon University by establishing sector leading research that informs and develops opportunity in both formal and informal education. Establishing strong partnerships and collaborations with universities, educational charities and agencies, schools and colleges, ACE will address policy and improve practice to challenge educational inequality.

Working closely with the Department for Education and wider government agencies, such as the Social Mobility Commission, the ACE research cluster is dedicated to research based interventions that have impact in education. The research in ACE brings together interdisciplinary researchers to work together through an educational lens. Funded research ranges from Youth Work to Maths Teaching, from Teacher Retention to Outdoor Education. Pushing boundaries in methodology, theory and practice, educational research in ACE is innovative; bringing new understanding to inform policy and practice both nationally and internationally.


EMIP Research Cluster

Experimental Myology & Integrative Physiology

The Experimental Myology and Integrative Physiology Research Cluster aims to unravel basic and integrative mechanisms that guide normal, athletic and disturbed function & metabolism, including the causes of disordered processes in muscle injury or disease for the translation of muscle research into therapeutic interventions in the biopharmaceutical, health and wellbeing sectors. Myology research benefits the greatest number of people and has far-reaching impact by advancing knowledge and innovation ministering to both diseased and healthy muscle, injured muscle, athletic muscle and ageing muscle.

Funding is secured through academic and industry funding avenues to build research capacity and by developing processes and a culture of translating research results into IP generation, services and products. Internal funding includes the support of a Mayflower Scholar and core FSHW investment for basal operations. Moreover, key aspects of our research are externally funded through a H2020-MSCAS Muscle Stress Relief project (Project ID 645648) led by Karatzaferi; an integrated research program linking together basic research on secondary myopathies in stress states to innovative translation in applied myology. It is funded under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE) scheme and opens ups unique opportunities for senior and early stage researchers for research excellence, international collaboration and networking. The cluster also maintains a fruitful and active collaboration with local (KSL) and international (Nestle) industry actors.


BEE Research Cluster

Business Enterprise & Entrepreneurship

BEE represents a variety of significant and pertinent topics in Business, Enterprise and Entrepreneurship; enterprise education, lifestyle entrepreneurship and social enterprise.  Through its links to the Marjon Business School and The Edge, your enterprise hub, BEE has established a number of significant partnerships with established organisations and institutions operating in our three areas of expertise.  These include Devon and Cornwall Business Council, the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership, Plymouth City Council, the Social Enterprise Mark and the Plymouth Social Enterprise Network.  Our intention is to work collaboratively with these institutions to conduct research that is relevant and valuable to the South West, creating an impact on its economy.