ESRC Impact Prize winner 2015: Outstanding impact in Society

Dr Hester Parr has been awarded the prestigious ESRC 'Celebrating Impact: Outstanding Impact in Society' Award 2015 on behalf of the Geographies of Missing People project. The project has improved the way UK police officers relate to missing persons and transformed policing guidance on the handling of missing persons and their families.


  • Police Scotland has included changes to 'good practice' handling of missing persons based on research recommendations.
  • Police operational guidance for Scotland now incorporates research recommendations in its best practice guidelines for handling the families of missing persons. Draft guidance for England and Wales also includes this.
  • The research materials and project reports are reaching over 30,000 police officers in England and Wales via existing training resources, based on completion figures for 2012-15, the equivalent to approximately one in four officers over a three year period.
  • Dr Parr and colleague Dr Penny Woolnough sit on the Scottish Government-led Working Group on Missing Persons Strategy for Scotland 2014-2015 - a new policy initiative designed to protect vulnerable missing people.
  • Dr Parr has been appointed to the Advisory Board of the newly established Aftercare Service for the Missing People Charity in Wales.
  • Find out more about the award on the ESRC website.

Economic and Social Research Council University of Glasgow University of Dundee Scottish Institute for Policing Research