Research Evaluation Framework 2028 – What and Why?

14 Sep, 2023:

10:30 am -

14 Sep, 2023:

12:00 pm

The Research Evaluation Framework (REF) is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK Higher Education institutions developed by the four UK higher education funding bodies. The results of the last exercise were published in 2021. Plans for REF 2028 are already underway and the initial decisions for the high-level design of the next assessment exercise  are currently out for consultation. 

In this webinar, we will look at what REF is, why it is important, and how Early Career Researchers can be involved in the next assessment exercise. They’ll be an opportunity to discuss how REF is related to the career development of ECRs, what it means to be involved in the REF as an ECR, and as future leaders in the research and higher education sector, what research cultures and environments REF could incentivise. Attendees may also want to think about how the REF can present opportunities to use the Welsh language pan-Wales as part of recognising research excellence, as well as the contribution of Welsh-medium research, and treating Welsh no less favourable than English.

You might want to consider the challenges posed by a national research assessment exercise to ECRs, including questions such as how can you contribute to your institution’s REF submission? Do you envisage any adverse impacts on emerging researchers through how REF measures research excellence?

Professor Richard Winpenny from the University of Manchester and Dr Hayley Moulding from HEFCW will lead this session, followed by Q&A from attendees. A breakout room for a discussion on the impact of the REF for Welsh language speakers will form a portion of the Q&A session.


Dr Hayley Moulding, Senior Research Manager at the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW)

Dr Hayley Moulding is the Senior Research Manager at the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW). Dr Moulding works in higher education and research policy to contribute to creating healthy, safe and dynamic research cultures and environments within Welsh institutions. As part of her role, Dr Moulding works with the four UK higher education funding bodies as part of the consultations on the next Research Excellence Framework in 2028, where the focus on research culture and environment has increased greatly. Through engaging with the sector, Dr Moulding can ensure a breadth of views from those people working as researchers and research-related staff are reflected back into the design and development of the next assessment exercise.

Professor Richard Winpenny (FLSW), Professor of Chemistry, Manchester University

Richard Winpenny was born and educated in Port Talbot. He obtained both his degrees from Imperial College, London; his Ph.D. studies with Profs. David Goodgame and David Williams involved synthesis and structural characterisation of coordination polymers. After a period at Texas A&M University, working as a postdoctoral fellow with Prof. John Fackler, Jr., he moved to a lectureship at the University of Edinburgh. In 2000, after ten years in the frozen wastes of Northern Britain, he was appointed to the Chair of Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Manchester. Since 2018 he has held an EPSRC Established Career Fellowship and an ERC Advanced Grant. He has been Associate Dean for Research in the Faculty of Engineering and Sciences at Manchester, and Head of School of Chemistry. He wrote the Manchester Chemistry department environment statement for REF2020. He is presently Science Director of Royce@Manchester. He is a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales and a member of the Academia Europaea.