Research Excellence Framework

Holding all the cards

Universities hoping to submit staff who have already left are going to have to work hard on maintaining goodwill, says Robert Dingwall

Eleanor Shakespeare illustration (7 December 2017)

Monographs typically constitute a scholar’s greatest achievement, but REF strategists discourage their production, says Bruce Macfarlane

Miles Cole illustration (30 November 2017)

The 2021 research excellence framework could be more representative and humane than ever, but the devil will be in the implementation, says James Wilsdon

Old school athletics

Final decisions on shape of research excellence framework are an improvement but will not end ‘game-playing’, sector experts warn

Research excellence framework assessment

New rules implemented 'will give a more rounded view of the research carried out' and reflect better on individuals, says funding body head

Several top researchers exit Teesside after professors given individual ratings out of 32, senior academic claims

Man leaning back

Research is paid for by legerdemain, and we should be honest about it if we want to correct funding imbalances and treat students fairly

Man in suit on diving board

University of Hertfordshire job cuts add to fears staff could be forced out ahead of REF 2021

Adventurous people at Niagara Falls

The research excellence framework’s panels will look at factors including adventurousness, disciplinary diversity and methodological clarity, predicts Martin Willis

University workers

Having caused a scandal over research assessment back in the 1990s, Lincoln Allison is well placed to give an overview of its impact, and still finds it wanting

mental health, thinking

Universities must support those responsible for the impact case studies that will carry so much weight in the next research excellence framework, says Jonathan Grant

Inaugural UK-US science deal will include investment in two major projects Stateside

triangle, warning

Joy Carter urges universities and policymakers to embrace the ‘joy of learning’

Weighing huge pumpkin

Hefce stops short of adopting Lord Stern’s proposal to include university-wide impact in research assessment scores

Eleanor Shakespeare illustration (24 August 2017)

It is time to consider how we can stop senior academics bullying their way on to research papers, says Trisha Greenhalgh

predatory journals

Universities, funders, rankers and individual academics all need to act to stamp out predatory publishers, says Roger Watson

Jon Krause illustration

The publication game that researchers are obliged to play has stripped the purpose out of social research. Time to change the rules, says Yiannis Gabriel

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Sharing credit

Both universities could gain credit when an academic moves, under plans

Working with a laptop on the beach

The pressure of producing high-quality research publications spoils the long vacation for many academics, says Rachel Moss