Society Responds to REF28 Consultation

The impact on workload, training for postgraduate research students and the effect on Welsh language submissions are among the issues raised in our response to a recent UKRI consultation on the Research Excellence Framework 2028.

We strongly support the general aspirations expressed in the document regarding research culture, diversity and inclusion but remain concerned that the pressures and forces HE institutions feel during the REF process may lead to unclear, unintended consequences. We urge caution in thinking that a REF process can and should be used to drive all desired changes in research culture, inclusivity and diversity.

Our comments focussed on the following:

  • administrative workload;
  • potential impact on individual researchers, particularly those with protected characteristics or from other; underrepresented groups
  • pressure that might be faced by academics employed on teaching-only contracts;
  • training of and support for postgraduate research student;
  • low threshold for demonstrating an individual’s substantive link with an institution;
  • risk of fewer Welsh-language outputs being produced or chosen for submission.

Read our full consultation response here.