Exeter comes third in England for additional research funds

University of Exeter top three in England for additional government research money

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) has awarded the University of Exeter an additional £3.8 million for research, the third highest gain amongst English universities, only surpassed by Kings College London and University College London. The £3.8 million represented a 22% uplift on an already significant base figure.

The increased funding is the result of Exeter’s excellent performance in the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014), in which it was ranked 16th nationally* when assessed against the very highest 4* grade for world-leading research.

Prof Nick Talbot, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Transfer, University of Exeter said: “This is a fantastic result for Exeter and places us in the very top group of Universities in the UK. The significant new funding is a recognition of the quality of the research that takes place in the institution and the impact that it achieves.

“It is also very positive news for the South West, showing that it has world-leading research that contributes strongly to the economy. We will re-invest this new funding in further developing our research programmes and aim to make Exeter a global centre for learning.”

We had world-leading research in all the units we submitted to REF with 82% of our research rated as world-leading or internationally excellent. Exeter has risen hugely since 2008 (from 56% to 82% world-leading/internationally excellent research) and now ranks first in the South West.

The new University of Exeter Medical School was ranked particularly strongly, with all research ranked world leading or internationally excellent for impact. Exeter also performed extremely well in humanities and social sciences, whilst strengthening its capacity and research reputation in physical and life sciences, including entering the assessment for Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences for the first time ever.

Exeter has four subjects ranked in the top 5 nationally, eight in the top 10, and around 80% of its subjects in the top 20, based on their proportion of world-leading and internationally excellent research.

The University’s strong research performance also extends to its Penryn Campus in Cornwall where all subject areas saw an increase in quality from 2008, with world-leading environmentally-focused, biosciences and sustainability research very prominent.

The University of Exeter makes a substantial contribution to revenue, employment and growth across the region, with a recent report by Universities UK indicating it injects £600 million into the South West economy annually. A separate report by Oxford Economics showed that the University of Exeter and Falmouth University, who jointly share and manage the Penryn Campus, have contributed £491 million to the economy of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly over a 10-year period, from 2002.

*Not including specialist institutions, or those with anomalous data.

Date: 26 March 2015

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