Exeter Astrophysicist Suzanne Aigrain is a key member of the COROT space mission to detect new planets outside of our solar system.

International research

Exeter is consistently ranked in the top 10 of UK universities and in the top 1% in the World.  Exeter has 18,000 students and three campuses in the South West of England.  We have world-class research in all of the 31 subject areas in the University.  In the last UK Research Assessment Exercise, Exeter rose more places than any other university.  Our total research income in 2010-11 was £46.3m.

We are leaders in cutting-edge science, engineering, mathematics and medicine research, as well as having a world-class reputation in the humanities and social sciences built up over many years.  Our major research areas are:

  • Climate Change
  • Environment and Sustainable Futures
  • Extra Solar Planets
  • Functional Materials
  • Global Uncertainties
  • Identities and Beliefs
  • Science, Technology and Culture
  • Societal and Lifestyle Shifts
  • Systems Biology
  • Translational Medicine

There are currently more than 1,200 active researchers at Exeter with more than 1,600 research students from all around the world. Last year we recruited 200 new researchers. We are investing over £400m in our research and science base, including new laboratories and equipment for science research, and a redevelopment of library space aimed specifically at researchers in the humanities and social sciences.

Our faculty constantly tackle the World's greatest challenges, from breakthroughs that help combat diabetes, dementia and mood disorders; technologies to secure food, energy and water supply or to drive new materials such as graphene or advanced manufacturing; and social or cultural concerns such as Middle East conflict, religious radicalisation and economic stability.

We are constantly seeking new ways to engage with government, industry and the community in order to build productive, sustainable partnerships. Our focus on partnership and open innovation means that our income from external partners is now one of the highest in the UK per member of academic staff. We work on more than 1,000 external projects each year. Our Innovation Programme is supporting more than 100 new or growing ventures. Internationally we have very strong strategic links with universities in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, India and the US.

Key facts and figures:

  • In the 2008 RAE, Exeter was ranked in the top 10 in 16 subjects and top 20 in 27 subjects
  • Exeter's research quality has risen by 20 places since 1996
  • Exeter's income from research and knowledge transfer grants, contracts and infrastructure funding is £65m
  • Income has increased by 69% since 2007-08
  • Exeter's income from collaborative research and knowledge transfer per FTE is one of the highest in the UK
  • Income from collaborative research and knowledge transfer has risen by 81% since 2007-08
  • Exeter has 1,600 PhD students (1,400 FTE)