These metrics don't measure up 4

June 23, 2006

The Higher Education Funding Council for England must be trying to discredit metrics by its absurd proposal to use funding - an input measure - instead of the research assessment exercise. This is merely to replace one form of unaccountable committee with another.

True research metrics are outputs such as citations and publications, which provide an objective, transparent, valid and cheap alternative to peer review.

Incidentally, metrics yield either a Golden Triangle (Cambridge and Oxford universities and Imperial and University College London) or a Golden Pentagon (adding Manchester and Edinburgh universities) - but not a diamond.

Bruce Charlton

Newcastle upon Tyne University

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