Date of release: Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Statement from RefTom Barnes, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research & Enterprise), and David Maguire, Vice-Chancellor, on the university's good performance in this national review of research quality.

We are delighted to report that the university has performed well in the REF (Research Excellence Framework), the independent national assessment of research in higher education, whose results have been published this morning.

The headline figures for Greenwich are very good: the university’s grade point average (ie our average star rating has increased to 2.33, out of a possible 4.0. This is a significant improvement from an average of 1.90 in the last RAE, held in 2008.  

An especially pleasing aspect of this quality improvement is that it reflects the work of a greater number of staff. This time round, we submitted over 240 researchers (the equivalent of more than 200 full time staff, FTE), an increase of 12%. In addition, the proportion of world class (4*) research at the university has risen from 4.3% to 8.5%, with the proportion of internationally excellent or better (4* and 3*) increasing from 25.5% to 41.5%.

Several areas of particular research strength at Greenwich have been recognised in the REF results. The university’s top-performing Unit of Assessment (UoA) is Aeronautical Mechanical, Chemical & Manufacturing Engineering, with a grade point average of 2.9 and nearly 80% of research outputs rated 3* or better. Many congratulations to Professors Chris Bailey, Mike Bradley, Ed Galea, Mayur Patel, Koulis Pericleous and their teams for this excellent achievement.

The Natural Resources Institute put in an excellent performance in two UoAs, with some outstanding results in terms of research impact in Agriculture, Veterinary & Food Science, where it achieved  a 4* impact rating for 90% of its work (with 100% rated 4* or 3*). This places it third among all universities in the country in this UoA. NRI’s power score (the product of quality and submission size) is the highest in the university.

Another accolade goes to colleagues in Nursing, who secured a grade point average of 2.8 for the quality of their publications with 72% rated at 3* or better – another excellent performance.

Impact has also been a strength in Chemistry, which has done very well indeed, with a good-sized entry of 14 researchers (FTE).

Also performing well are English Language & Literature, and Electrical & Electronic Engineering; our congratulations go to everyone in those two areas too, for a job well done.

An honourable mention goes to Business & Management, Greenwich’s largest UoA with 29 staff (FTE). It has delivered research power as well as a very creditable result, especially in impact, where 80% was 3* and above.

The university’s joint Pharmacy submission with Kent also had a strong showing, achieving an overall grade point average of 2.9 with 81% assessed as 4* or 3*.

Summing up, the university has delivered a strong performance in many areas. These results show that we have areas of truly outstanding talent in the university, which compare well with the very best in the country and, indeed, the world. Greenwich’s strategic plan set tough targets to increase both the quantity and quality of research. Together we have shown that we can meet these expectations, as more people are now involved in active research, and at the highest levels. We can all be enormously proud of what has been achieved.
 
Story by Public Relations.