Nottingham Trent University has been crowned University of the Year at the Times Higher Education Awards 2017.
Judges praised the institution for “combining bold ambition with the hard work and commitment required to turn vision into reality”, highlighting the university’s impressive record on outreach and its use of learning analytics to improve retention.
The awards were presented at a ceremony hosted by the comedian Al Murray at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. They recognise UK universities and their staff for exceptional teaching, research, student support, entrepreneurship, collaborations and outreach.
“This year has been a tough one for universities, which have been buffeted not only by the rapidly changing policy environment but also by an unprecedented succession of headlines questioning what they do and how they do it,” said John Gill, THE’s editor.
“The winners of this year’s Times Higher Education Awards offer the perfect response, illustrating the extraordinary talent, creativity and sheer hard work that is to be found across our university sector.
“The reality is that universities are teeming with brilliant individuals and teams who add far more to the health, wealth and happiness of the country than is often recognised. Our sincere congratulations to the winners, and to all those who made up the shortlists.”
Other winners included Loughborough University, which topped the Technological Innovation of the Year category for its work on reducing emissions of nitrogen oxides from diesel engines, and whose Matthew Inglis, a reader in its Mathematics Education Centre, was named Outstanding Research Supervisor of the Year.
Cardiff University also collected two prizes: Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community, for an archaeology project that helps to tackle social exclusion on a deprived housing estate, and International Collaboration of the Year, in partnership with the University of Namibia.
The Lord Dearing Lifetime Achievement Award went to John Curtice, professor of politics at the University of Strathclyde, in recognition of the contribution that his expertise in polling has made to public understanding of recent elections and referendums. Professor Curtice is, the citation said, “living proof that expertise retains a central role in national life”.
Times Higher Education Awards 2017 winners
University of the Year
Nottingham Trent University
Most Innovative Teacher of the Year
Russell Crawford, Keele University
Outstanding University Entrepreneurship Award
Liverpool John Moores University
Technological Innovation of the Year
Most Innovative Contribution to Business-University Collaboration
Ryder Architecture, in collaboration with Northumbria University
Excellence and Innovation in the Arts
University of Brighton
Outstanding Contribution to Leadership Development
University of Glasgow
THE DataPoints Merit Award
University of Leicester
Widening Participation or Outreach Initiative of the Year
Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community
Outstanding Research Supervisor of the Year
Matthew Inglis, Loughborough University
International Collaboration of the Year
Cardiff University, in collaboration with the University of Namibia
Research Project of the Year: STEM
Heriot-Watt University on behalf of the Edinburgh Super-Resolution Imaging Consortium
Highly commended: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of London, on behalf of The WOMAN Trial
Research Project of the Year: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
School of Advanced Study, University of London
Highly commended: Heriot-Watt University
Most Improved Student Experience
Outstanding Support for Students
University of Kent
Highly commended: Durham University
International Impact Award
The Open University
Business School of the Year
Saïd Business School, University of Oxford
Highly commended: ESCP Europe Business School (London)
The Lord Dearing Lifetime Achievement Award
John Curtice, University of Strathclyde