‘Whole staff submission’ to the next REF is reputedly a red line for the universities minister. How is this to be reconciled with a sector that believes it is unworkable and undesirable? Martin McQuillan investigates.
As the University Alliance announce a new doctoral training alliance and report in to research and innovation, new Chief Executive Maddalaine Ansell sets out her manifesto for the future of UK research.
As the 2014 REF results are published, Mark Leach looks at where they sit in the wider effort to fund and support research. With so much on the table in spending review negotiations in the next few years, the next steps will prove critical in shaping the future of the REF exercise and the research base it supports.
I have a confession to make. During my days at Russell Group institutions I favoured the research concentration tendency; that is, the view that it would be better if fewer universities were funded by central government to undertake research. I now understand that I was wrong. There, I’ve said it. And I’m sorry.
The REF submission deadline has finally arrived. But it’s only the beginning for researchers, departments and universities that have gambled big and need a good result. The results will make or break many universities’ ambitions and long-term strategic plans. The REF’s importance to the sector, or the impact on it cannot be overstated. But it’s not just the REF looming large on policymaker’s minds. With severe pressure on the whole of the BIS budget and many outstanding issues to resolve, will the next Parliament afford the opportunity for a far-reaching debate to help shape the next long term settlement for research and science in the UK?