This morning the results of the ‘Research Excellence Framework’ for 2014 were released. The REF is a survey and evaluation of research production across all universities in the UK. The work done by us in English and Creative writing was entered as part of a broad, interdisciplinary package in ‘Unit of Assessment’ 36 (which included also philosophy and the social sciences). The results are a very welcome Christmas present!
To be sure, slightly disappointing was the ‘impact’ score, a measure of to what extent our work has changed public opinion or behaviours. This was a new measure this time around, and clearly we have more to learn about how to present our theoretical/ historical work in the best light.
Apart from that, though, there was great news. Not only was the vast majority of our work judged to be of international standing, but we were praised too for the environment we have crafted here to encourage further work, and bring on young researchers, including doctoral students. Well done, everyone!