A university with sector leading, applied research
Our overall strategy is to support high-quality research activity of all kinds, while pursuing every opportunity to create real-world impact that benefits the economy and, in particular, the challenged North-East communities in which we are located. Over this period the University has, through strategic investment of support funds, maintained a success rate of c.50% in grant applications; seen a marked increase in the total value of awards; increased the number of research-active staff in receipt of resources and/or development; substantially increased the proportion of research outputs indexed by WoS; and increased knowledge exchange activity.
Following REF2014, a comprehensive review was undertaken, in consultation with staff and external partners, to strengthen research infrastructure and culture. Good practice was identified from the REF2014 results, as was weaker performance in some areas. Organisational challenges were recognised, including staff work-loading, the management of research productivity and the need to extend partnerships and develop ‘critical mass’. A revised institutional strategy was therefore required.
The refreshed Research and Innovation Strategy was approved by the Board of Governors in 2017. It set out an agenda for applied research that values all research-active staff and students, supports excellence and contributes to teaching. The strategy heralded a transition into comprehensive, institution-level planning and resource allocation, with leadership and governance significantly strengthened.
Professor Michael Young
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, (Academic)