My week – 14 January 2013 - Professor David Hogg - Research Excellence Framework

Professor David Hogg, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation, gives an update on our Research Excellence Framework progress.

Professor David Hogg

The draft submissions for the Research Excellence Framework (REF) have now been assessed, and, whilst some are really excellent, there’s more work to do in other areas. The inclusion of case studies and impact statements has added a huge amount of activity compared to 2008’s Research Assessment Exercise, and there’s no doubt that REF 2014 is more challenging.

The second University-wide submission is due by the end of February, and all case studies, impact statements and environment statements need to be complete by then.  We need to be ready well in advance so that, if necessary, there’s more time to collect evidence and corroboration of impact.  

Evidencing impact is a vital – and time-consuming – part of the REF, so much so that we have established a REF Impact Steering Group to coordinate the production of case studies and guide us through the final stages of the exercise. Chaired by Pro-Dean for Research Evaluation Professor Edward Spiers, the group includes people with an interest across the four main panel areas, together with experts from Research and Innovation Service and Communications.

The Impact Steering Group will report on progress to the REF Steering and Review Groups and:

  • advise on allocation of internal reviewers for case studies and arrangements for feedback and advice to UOAs and case study authors
  • identify opportunities to improve the quality of submissions and interventions needed to improve them
  • assess and review Communications input to case study development.

Between now and the end of January I’ll be visiting each of the Research and Innovation Committees ahead of the Integrated Planning Exercise (IPE).  I’ve already been to the Faculty of Arts and Leeds University Business School and was really encouraged by the local initiatives and cross-faculty projects that are already happening.  As well as gathering information, my overall aim is to get people to think in advance about collaborative working. There is University-wide dimension to many research projects but we need to really encourage these local initiatives and get people to bring forward investment ideas earlier so we can incorporate them into the IPE.


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