Glasgow City Region’s universities have performed very strongly in the latest national assessment of the UK’s higher education, the Research Excellence Framework 2021 (REF).
REF is the UK Government’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. Strathclyde’s 2021 performance improves on the 2014 results and demonstrates that the University has continued to build strength and quality in its research profile.
The strong performance in REF 2021 relative to other institutions is reflected in the Times Higher Education’s (THE) REF ranking tables based on Grade Point Average.
University of Strathclyde
Almost 90% of research produced by the University of Strathclyde has been rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally-excellent’. In a reflection of Strathclyde as ‘the place of useful learning’, the University’s impact and research environment have been recognised as particularly strong, with both quality profiles being above average for the sector.
Strathclyde submitted more than 1,800 research outputs and 58 impact case studies across 14 units of assessment (UOA) for peer review by expert panels. Each UOA is awarded a quality rating with the top ratings being ‘world-leading’ (4-star) or ‘internationally excellent’ (3-star).
Professor Sir Jim McDonald, Principal & Vice-Chancellor of the University of Strathclyde, said: “I am delighted with Strathclyde’s strong results in the REF 2021 which reflects our status as a leading international technological university that is delivering high-quality research which is making a positive impact on the world.
University of Glasgow
The University of Glasgow has been recognised for its world-leading research and the positive impact it has on society. The results highlight Glasgow’s position as a world-changing university which produces research of global and national importance.
The submission also highlighted the universities commitment to making a difference beyond academia. The University submitted 118 impact case studies to expert panels, showcasing the University’s wide-ranging collaborations with external partners to deliver societal and economic impacts locally, nationally and globally.
The University of Glasgow has one of the broadest research bases in the UK with a wide range of disciplines reflected in its academic community.
Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal and Vice-Chancellor said “We are very pleased with these results which highlight Glasgow’s global outlook and the hard work and talent of our colleagues. We are committed to working with partners across the world to create high-quality research with real-world impact. Our strategies and investment will continue to reflect this ambition and commitment.
University of the West of Scotland
Ninety percent of research at University of the West of Scotland is world-leading, internationally excellent, or recognised internationally, according to the national assessment. The University also increased its position for research intensity, now ranking within the top 90 universities in the UK.
UWS’s REF results include an outstanding performance for Sport and Exercise Sciences, Leisure and Tourism, ranking within the top three Scottish universities in this area, with 71 percent of research recognised as world-leading or internationally excellent. The University also saw 100 percent of its impact in Physics recognised as internationally excellent.
Professor Milan Radosavljevic, Vice-Principal, Research, Innovation and Engagement, said: “We are extremely encouraged by the University’s REF results and it is fantastic to see our progress in areas such as research intensity recognised.
Glasgow Caledonian University
A staggering 91% of GCUs health research has been formally classified as world leading or internationally excellent, and well over 80% classified as outstanding for its impact. The proportion of our research overall that is considered to be world leading or internationally excellent was 72%, a figure unsurpassed by any other Scottish modern university.
The results follow GCU health researchers receiving a top international impact award in April for world-leading HIV and hepatitis C prevention research in people who inject drugs. The University’s research has also helped Scotland become one of the first countries in the world to provide a successful HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis service.
GCU Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies CBE, FRSE said: “These excellent research results demonstrate that, not only is the University delivering world-class research, it is doing so with impact, and clearly delivering its mission for the common good.
Glasgow School of Art
Overall, 82% of the GSA’s research was assessed to be world-leading and internationally excellent, a major improvement from the last REF (2014), furthering the GSA’s position as one of the UK’s leading higher education institutions in art and design.
From ground-breaking innovations such as co-design in healthcare, architectural initiatives to improve the quality of housing and raising awareness of internationally important issues through fine art practice, our researchers are collaborative, work in partnership and, importantly for a small specialist institution, continue to teach, enhancing the student experience of the world’s leading art schools.
Penny Macbeth, Director of The Glasgow School of Art said: “Art and Design research has a vital role to play in addressing key challenges that face society today. From ground-breaking innovations such as co-design in healthcare, architectural initiatives to improve the quality of housing and raising awareness of internationally important issues through fine art practice, our researchers are collaborative, work in partnership and importantly for a small specialist institution, continue to teach, enhancing the student experience of the world’s leading art schools.”