Making the Research Dynamic Dominant in the Idea of the University
The empirical basis of this chapter is centred around the outcomes of the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, although it is recognised that the assessment process has continued to evolve over time. The purpose of the process was to distribute core research funding selectively—to reflect that research output, in terms of both quality and quantity, varied considerably from one higher education institution to the next with parallel variations being shown by individual academics. The new universities, with Warwick and York leading the way, form a second tier in the UK research hierarchy in terms of the quality of their research outputs and the number of their faculty who contribute to their research output. In these terms they make up a group of universities which falls just below the leading research universities that is comprised of Oxford, Cambridge, the major civics, and the larger colleges of the University of London. However, because of its more specialised academic focus, the University of Essex occupies within the group. The research assessment exercise confers status as well resources, which may help to explain why all UK universities endeavour to have at least one or two departments which have a reputation for research excellence.
KeywordsResearch selectivity Measuring research quality Specialised research agenda
- Barnett, R. (1994). The limits of competence: Knowledge, higher education and society. Buckingham: Society for Research into Higher Education & Open University Press.Google Scholar
- Berdahl, R. O. (1959). British universities and the state. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Henkel, M. (2000). Academic identities and policy change in higher education. London: Jessica Kingsley.Google Scholar
- McNay, I. (1997). The impact of the research assessment exercise on institutional and individual behaviour in english higher education, M 5/97. Bristol: Higher Education Funding Council.Google Scholar
- Shattock, M. (2012). Making policy in british higher education, 1945–2011. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill Education.Google Scholar
- Tapper, T., & Palfreyman, D. (2000). Oxford and the decline of the collegiate tradition. London: Woburn P.Google Scholar
Electronic Sources and Websites
- Lancaster University. (2016). University of Lancaster: Research. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/research/.
- Research assessment exercise (RAE). (2008). Results: Quality profile. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from http://www.rae.ac.uk/results/qualityProfile.aspx.
- Roberts, G. (2003). Review of research assessment, report by Sir Gareth Roberts to the UK funding bodies. Retrieved January 30, 2016, from http://www.ra-review.ac.uk/reports/roberts.asp.
- Russell group. (2017). Russell group: About us. Retrieved March 20, 2017, from http://www.russellgroup.ac.uk/.
- Stern, N. (2017). Building on success and learning from experience: An independent review of the research excellence framework [The Stern Review]. Retrieved December 30, 2017, from https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/upload.
- The Guardian. (2008). Quality profiles for RAE 2008. Retrieved April 17, 2016, from www.theguardian.com/education/table/2008.
- University of East Anglian. (2016). University of East Anglia: Research performance. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from https://www.uea.ac.uk/research/research-performance.
- University of Essex. (2016). University of Essex: Our research excellence. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from https://www.essex.ac.uk/research.
- University of Kent. (2016). University of Kent: Research excellence framework 2014. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from https://www.kent.ac.uk/research/ref2014/.
- University of Sussex. (2016). University of Sussex: Our research. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from http://www.sussex.ac.uk/research/about/.
- University of Warwick. (2016). University of Warwick: Research excellence framework 2014. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/ref2014/.
- University of York. (2016). University of York: Research excellence framework 2014. Retrieved April 12, 2016, from https://www.york.ac.uk/research/performance/ref-2014-results/.