Step 6: Use the right standards Learn the ins and outs of our standards.

The Impaakt Team

13 min Read Time | August 10th 2021

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A crucial step in getting published

Using the right standards in your impact analysis is crucial, if the articles across the platform do not use consistent standards then it makes it very difficult for our community to rate the impact they are reading about.

You could have done everything right when it comes to the actual analyses, but if you use the wrong standards your work will still be rejected. Here is our guide on how to ensure that doesn't happen!

This article is very important. We tried to make it light, but it’s essential that we share with everyone our standards so that there is some uniformity between analyses.

Feel free to scroll down if there is any specific standard you are looking for.

Key Takeaways


Whenever you are not sure how to write quotes, in-text citations, units or numbers, make sure to double-check the list below.


The most basic standards you must follow are to write in English, use the International System of units, introduce abbreviations and use only euros or US dollars as currencies.


If you have a doubt, always refer to this list which is constantly updated.


We know that people from all over the globe join Impaakt. Therefore, we understand that different varieties of English are used in different countries. We accept both UK English and American English.

However, you should follow one variety of English (UK English or American English) consistently in your analysis.


To maintain an objective and neutral voice, you should never refer to yourself or the readers using I, my, us, you or similar forms.


You should avoid using quotations in general, and instead paraphrase and use your own words.

However, if you believe a quote would add a lot of value to your analysis, please put it between quotation marks and in italic.

You should use "straight" quotation marks, not curly ones, accent marks, backticks (`text´), low-high („ “) or guillemet (« »).

In-text citations

If you use only one source for an entire paragraph, you can add the source once, at the end of the paragraph.

In terms of formatting, your sources should always be referenced, hyperlinked, and superscripted in the body of your analysis following this standard:


N = source number,
X = page number within the source (if there is any)
X-Y = page range within the source For multiple sources, please separate them with a comma and no spacing:

Attention: in-between the source number and the page number, please add a semicolon ; and the letter p.

Select "Open in new tab" when adding a new in-text citation.

For more information, check our article on How to Reference like a Pro.


A useful rule of thumb is to always keep it simple.

You should avoid using any extra formatting options, such as bullet points and lists, the bold format, indentations, and others.


  • It is preferable not to use decimals, especially when making forecasts/predictions. Instead, values should be rounded up or down to their closest integer.
  • Integers expressible in one or two words may be expressed in numerals (unless it is below 10, and can be expressed in words). Other numbers are given in numerals or in forms such as 121 million.
  • You should use dots for decimal separators if necessary* (e.g. 6.5 million)
  • You should use a comma for thousands separator (e.g. 6,500,000)
  • Mn; Bn; Tn, respectively, may be used for "million" (x10^6) or "billion" (x10^9) or "trillion" (x10^12) after a number when the currency unit has been spelled out at the first occurrence (Her estate of USD45 million was split among her husband (USD30M) and her son (USD15M).
  • For physical numbers, the use of scientific multiples is highly recommended: "k" for kilo (x103), "M" for Mega (x106), and "G" for Giga (x109), "T" for Tera (x1012). For even bigger multiples, the use of "10n " is preferred.
  • For percentages, the symbol (%) should be used, with no spaces between the number and the symbol.

Understanding the Indian Numeral System

All values must be expressed in the international numerical system (INS).

The difference between the international and Indian systems is the position of commas and the place values.

The sequence of place values in the Indian system is ones, tens, hundreds, thousands, ten thousand, lakhs, ten lakhs, and crores. For example; 32,49,89,986

6-ones, 8-tens, 9-hundreds, 9-thousands, 8-ten thousand, 9-lakhs, 4-ten lakhs, 2-crores, 3-ten crores.

The most commonly used place values are; Lakhs which are expressed as 100,000 and crores as expressed as 10,000,000.

If an amount is reported in either lakhs or crores multiply the amount by 100,000 or 10,000,000 respectively then convert it.

"The terms lakh or 1,00,000 (one hundred thousand, written as 100,000 outside India) and crore or 1,00,00,000 (ten million, written as 10,000,000 outside India) are the most commonly used terms in Indian English to express large numbers in the system."

How to convert crore to million? One crore is equal to 10 million.

A crore, kodi, khokha, karod, karor, or koti denotes ten million and is equal to 100 lakh in the Indian numbering system. It is written as 1,00,00,000 with the local 2,2,3 style of digit group separators."


To have a base for comparison and some uniformity, we ask that you convert all currencies should be converted to either euro (EUR) or US dollars (USD).

You should use the international currency code once before using the currency symbol, as the same symbol can be used for several currencies. For instance, $ is used for US dollars, Canadian dollars, Singapore dollars, etc.

For formatting, currency symbols are placed before the number, and unspaced (e.g., USD1.20 not USD 1.20).


  • Full dates are formatted as 10 June 2020 or June 10, 2020.
  • Abbreviations for months, such as Feb, are used only where space is limited. Such abbreviations should use three letters only, and should not be followed by a period (full point) except at the end of a sentence.
  • Do not use the year before the digits (1995, not the year 1995), unless the meaning would otherwise be unclear.
  • Decades are written in the format “the 1980s”, with no apostrophe. Use the two-digit form ('80s) only with an established social or cultural meaning.
  • The term "current" should be avoided. What is current today may not be tomorrow; situations change over time. Instead, use date- and time-specific text.


As a general rule, most abbreviations should be spelled out before being used, unless they are well-known (e.g. unions of countries such as the EU)

For countries

  • Following the ISO 3166 international standard, a three-digit code should be used. For example: CAN, FRA, USA, IND.
  • See all country codes here.

For unions of countries

  • Only official acronyms should be used, such as the EU for the European Union.

For international organizations

  • Official acronyms should be used.
  • See here for more.


All units should follow the International System of Units (SI).

*Please subscript the 2 in CO2 and CO2e, and superscript the number when writing in square or cubic meters/kilometers.






Tonnes (or

metric tons)*

Million tonnes (or million metric tons)




Mn t



Long ton/short ton (sometimes written just ton)

















Square meter




Square foot




Liter or litre

Cubic meter

L or l





Cubic foot












y or yr











Carbon dioxide

Carbon dioxide equivalent





*Japanese companies use the metric system, but write metric tons/tonnes as 'ton'. This can be verified by simply double-checking their reports and verifying that all units are in the metric system. For instance, water is reported in m3 and not ft3.

**Please round to the nearest whole number, especially when making forecasts or own calculations, as precise numbers do not always make sense, and actually make the reading more complicated.

You can use words to show that these values are approximative.

For example, instead of writing:
The global hygiene products market is valued at USD130.81Bn as of 2019, with Essity having USD14.06Bn net sales in 2020, it has a global market share of roughly 10.7%. Based on statistics, 5.5Bn (71%) of people worldwide have access to basic hygiene services. As such, Essity’s products potentially reach 591.16Mn people (5.5Bn people x 10.7% global market share).

We would expect:
The global hygiene products market is valued at around USD130Bn as of 2019, with Essity having USD14Bn net sales in 2020, it has a global market share of roughly 11%. Based on statistics, 5.5Bn (71%) of people worldwide have access to basic hygiene services. As such, Essity’s products potentially reach roughly 600Mn people (5.5Bn people x 10.7% global market share).


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Step 4: Build a good structure

How should you structure your impact analysis.

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