Archive for REF

Subpanels’ lack of experience will put REF credibility at risk, Hefce told

Posted in Governance and administration, research with tags , on 18 March 2011 by Steve

“The lack of previous experience among members of two subpanels in the forthcoming research excellence framework could undermine researchers’ ‘grudging acceptance’ of the exercise, an academic has warned …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 17 March]

A Modest Proposal

Posted in research with tags , on 7 March 2011 by Steve

“Last week I posted a short item about the looming Kafka-esque nightmare that is the Research Excellence Framework. A few people commented to me in private that although they hate the REF and accept that it’s ridiculously expensive and time-consuming, they didn’t see any alternative. I’ve been thinking about it and thought I’d make a suggestion. Feel free to shoot it down in flames …” (more)

[In the Dark, 7 March]

Universities braced for heavier research burden

Posted in research with tags , on 1 March 2011 by Steve

“New rules on research funding will force academics to prove the impact of their work outside their own university …” (more)

[Anthea Lipsett, Guardian,1 March]

Hefce reduces points of impact in REF

Posted in research with tags , on 1 March 2011 by Steve

“The weighting given to impact in the first research excellence framework will be less than originally envisaged, the Higher Education Funding Council for England has confirmed …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 1 March]

Hefce likely to lessen the impact

Posted in research with tags , on 25 February 2011 by Steve

“Research ‘impact’ will count for less than the proposed 25 per cent in the research excellence framework, funding chiefs are expected to confirm next week …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 25 February]

Top research departments fail to shine in impact pilot

Posted in research with tags , on 20 January 2011 by Steve

“Hefce warns against reading too much into results as departments ‘experiment’. A number of top research departments performed unexpectedly poorly in the first official attempt to measure the impact of academics’ research, new data reveal …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 20 January]

Impact pilot recommends only minor tweaks to HEFCE plans

Posted in research with tags , on 11 November 2010 by Steve

“The pilot exercise to test the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s plans to assess economic and social impact in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework has reported back, and on the whole the people who took part — at least those who chaired the evaluation panels — are satisfied that it works …” (more)

[Brian Owens, Exquisite Life, 11 November]

REF draws fire for musical chairs

Posted in research with tags , on 28 October 2010 by Steve

“Law subject associations irate at precipitate move by Hefce to fill subpanel post. Funding chiefs have offered an olive branch in a row with law subject associations over who should chair the law subpanel for the 2014 research excellence framework …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 28 October]

In one day, Vince Cable has become an object of ridicule and loathing

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 9 September 2010 by Steve

“It was a momentary slip. Something, Lib Dems will say, that could happen to anyone. But one thing is for sure, Vince Cable’s confusion on yesterday’s Today programme over percentages, the Research Assessment Exercise and research council grants has cost him dearly with scientists …” (more)

[William Cullerne Bown, Exquisite Life, 9 September]

‘Frankenstein’ assessment is out of control

Posted in research with tags , on 9 September 2010 by Steve

“The research assessment process has become a Frankenstein’s monster that must be constantly managed in order to minimise its negative effects. The warning was made at a symposium at the British Educational Research Association (Bera) conference at the University of Warwick last week, which heard tales of ‘brutality’ and ‘blood on the carpet’ from the 2008 research assessment exercise …” (more)

[Rebecca Attwood, Times Higher Education, 9 September]

Impact hostility is ‘melting away’

Posted in research with tags , , on 1 July 2010 by Steve

“HEFCE director tells conference a ‘positive story’ as consensus grows in REF pilot. ‘Consensus is breaking out around the sector’ about the wisdom of including assessments of the impact of work in the UK’s research excellence framework …” (more)

[Paul Jump, Times Higher Education, 1 July]

Crisis of confidence: scholars unconvinced by REF impact pilot

Posted in research with tags , on 10 June 2010 by Steve

“A pilot project to measure the economic and social ‘impact’ of research in the forthcoming research excellence framework has exposed a host of problems and raised fears that the measure could stifle controversial work or research that is critical of the government …” (more)

[Matthew Reisz, Times Higher Education, 10 June]

Tories promise more university places and more freedom

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 13 April 2010 by Steve

“Conservative Party’s 2010 general election manifesto also pledges to delay the REF and to consider the Browne review ‘carefully’. The Conservative Party has pledged to strengthen higher education in its 2010 general election manifesto …” (more)

[Melanie Newman, Times Higher Education, 13 April]

The Citation Game

Posted in research with tags , on 9 April 2010 by Steve

“Last week I read an interesting bit of news in the Times Higher that the forthcoming Research Excellence Framework (REF) seems to be getting cold feet about using citation numbers as a metric for quantifying research quality. I shouldn’t be surprised about that, because I’ve always thought it was very difficult to apply such statistics in a meaningful way …” (more)

[In the Dark, 8 April]

Positive, but hardly logical

Posted in research with tags , on 3 April 2010 by Steve

“I am looking at a letter from Sir Alan Langlands, the chief executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, sent to just about every institution in the academy, and many more outside it. It is an upbeat letter, telling of the 534 responses to the consultation Hefce conducted on proposals for the research excellence framework …” (more)

[Simon Blackburn, Times Higher Education, 3 April]

Nervous Hefce ‘edging out’ of REF citations

Posted in research with tags , on 1 April 2010 by Steve

“The use of citations to judge research quality could be dropped entirely from the research excellence framework, potentially ditching one of the key differences with its predecessor, the research assessment exercise …” (more)

[Zoë Corbyn, Times Higher Education, 1 April]

Retrospective impact assessment an ‘insurmountable’ task

Posted in research with tags , on 23 March 2010 by Steve

“Funding chiefs face ‘insurmountable’ problems in their attempts to find a fair and effective way to assess the impact of research in the forthcoming research excellence framework. This is the conclusion of the House of Commons’ Science and Technology Committee, which also warned today that any cuts to research funding in tomorrow’s Budget would have ‘potentially devastating consequences for science in the UK’ …” (more)

[Zoë Corbyn, Times Higher Education, 23 March]

The impact of research – so hard to pin down

Posted in research with tags , , on 2 February 2010 by Steve

“I’ve been doing my best to ignore the ‘impact agenda’, but I’m sorry to say that finally I feel the need to add my two euros’ worth. Those following the debate will know that research grant applications now need to include an ‘impact statement’, while the new research excellence framework assesses impact as a major component of the research quality of each academic department …” (more)

[Jonathan Wolff, Guardian, 2 Tuesday]

Making an impact – or not …

Posted in research with tags , , on 15 January 2010 by Steve

“One of the defining questions being asked about universities around the world is what impact they should have on society. Should the benefit of a university education, or of university research, be that it will have created capacity for independent thinking and evaluation, or facilitated discovery and innovation that will ultimately produce technological, business, social or cultural improvements? …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 15 January]

Tory government would postpone REF, Willetts reveals

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 14 January 2010 by Steve

“The research excellence framework will be delayed by up to two years if the Conservatives win the 2010 general election, Times Higher Education can reveal. The Tories intend to postpone it to allow time for a thorough review of plans to measure the wider social and economic impact of research …” (more)

[Melanie Newman, Times Higher Education, 14 January