Essex ranks in the top 20 UK universities for research excellence (REF 2014, intensity weighted GPA, mainstream universities, THE 2014) and is in the top 4 for social science research. Once again our politics research is first in the UK – as it has been since rankings began in 1986. We are also ranked 25th in the UK for research quality (The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020).
The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the national assessment of research quality and impact. Our diverse strengths in conducting world-leading research were reconfirmed by REF 2014. We entered 14 different subject areas and seven were ranked in the UK’s Top 20 for research excellence, across social science, science and the humanities.
The results are used by the UK’s higher education funding bodies to allocate around £2 billion each year to university research. Our research case studies demonstrate the benefits of this investment, highlighting how our research improves society and economic prosperity. Examples of our impact include:
The REF replaced the national Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), which was last conducted in 2008.
The REF is made up of several different measures and we focus on research intensity, which looks at the quality of research, its impact, the research environment and the proportion of staff submitted to the REF. We call this ‘research excellence’. On this measure we’re ranked 19th in the UK.
|Subject||'Research excellence' (intensity) ranking||'Research quality' (GPA) ranking||World leading research 4*||Internationally excellent research 3*||Internationally recognised research 2*|
|Politics and International Studies||1st||1st||68%||19%||12%|
|Modern Languages and Linguistics||35th||8th||40%||43%||14%|
|Economics and Econometrics||5th||7th||32%||61%||7%|
|Business and Management Studies||24th||38th||17%||55%||25%|
|Art and Design: History, Practice and Theory||10th||10th||32%||57%||11%|
|English Language and Literature||35th||36th||29%||46%||22%|
|Science and Health|
|Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience||27th||13th||40%||50%||10%|
|Computer Science and Informatics||29th||36th||22%||49%||25%|
|Sports and Exercise Sciences, Leisure and Tourism||13th||27th||13%||41%||43%|