June 28th, 2023
Decisions on the high-level design of the next Research Excellence Framework (REF) have been published by the UK’s higher education funding bodies.
The next REF will conclude in 2028 and will assess research and impact between 2021 and 2027.
Professor Dame Jessica Corner, Executive Chair at Research England (who led the university’s REF2021 submission), said:
“This is a once-in-a-generation moment for change as we shift national research assessment away from a focus on individuals to how institutions and disciplines contribute to healthy, dynamic and inclusive research environments, and as we shift from a focus on published research outputs towards a broader view of what constitutes research excellence and how it can be demonstrated.”
UKRI is inviting higher education providers and other stakeholders to share their views on a number of specific policy areas through a short consultation, ending in October 2023.
Some of the proposed changes include:
Pip Peakman, Director of Research and Innovation at the University of Nottingham, commenting on the initial decisions of the Future Research Assessment Programme, said:
“We are reviewing the outline for REF2028 and welcome the opportunity to consult on its broader and more holistic approach to research assessment, including the proposed ‘People and Culture’ elements, which align with our own commitment to sustaining a dynamic, inclusive research culture where our people can achieve their potential.”
The university’s REF Strategy Committee is beginning strategic discussions and preparations for 2028 and further updates will follow.
The Research Excellence Framework drives research excellence across the UK, provides accountability for public investment in research, and informs the allocation of around £2bn of block-grant research funding each year. In REF2021, the University of Nottingham was placed seventh in the UK for research power according to analysis by Times Higher Education.
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