Excellent Research At North East Universities

18 December 2014, 06:12 | Updated: 18 December 2014, 06:33

North East universities are producing "world leading'' research across a range of subjects, according to an in-depth report.

Rankings show that Newcastle is 16th in the UK behind the likes of Oxford, Edinburgh and Cambridge in terms of research.

Durham's also in the top 20 produced by Research Fortnight, based on the results of 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), a large-scale exercise which reviews the quality of research in different subjects at universities across the UK.

In total, the research of more than 52,000 academic staff working at 154 institutions was peer-reviewed by a series of expert panels.

They graded the work, giving the best 4* (world leading) down to 1* (recognised nationally). The study was last carried out in 2008 and the latest results will be used to allocate research funding of around £2 billion a year to universities from 2015/16.

83% of Durham's research was assessed as "internationally excellent quality" or "world-leading", that is, either 3* or 4*. 

Overall, 98% of Durham University research was assessed as international quality, or 4*+3*+2*.  

Full North East List
* 16th - Newcastle University  (17th in 2008)
* 18th -Durham University  (19th in 2008)
* 52nd - Northumbria University  (81st in 2008)
* 102nd -Teesside University  (104th in 2008)
* 103rd - University of Sunderland  (84th in 2008)

Professor Andrew Wathey, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of Northumbria University said:
“These results mark a major step-change for Northumbria, positioning the University decisively as one of the fastest rising institutions in the UK higher education sector, and creating a broad and robust platform for the next phase of our development in research.”

Professor Claire Warwick, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) at Durham University said: 
"Our research was almost universally assessed as being of international quality. 

These results confirm that Durham is an international research powerhouse carrying out a breadth of excellent research which has proven and wide-ranging societal impact internationally, nationally and regionally."