Thursday, 28 May 2009

Lessons learned through Research Excellence Framework (REF) bibliometrics pilot

Bournemouth University were one of the participating institutions in HEFCE’s recent pilot to inform the use of bibliometric indicators in the Research Excellence Framework. HEFCE commissioned Technopolis to identify and disseminate the key lessons learned by all participating HEIs. The report Identification and dissemination of lessons learned by institutions participating in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) bibliometrics pilot highlights their findings. Concern is expressed regarding a proposed developmental REF bibliometrics exercise in 2010 which may risk rushed decision-making and implementation. This now appears to have been scrapped by HEFCE as bibliometrics are becoming less important to the REF.

Zoe Corbyn of the Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) reports on HEFCE's current thinking on the REF as a work in progress. She suggests that evolution rather than revolution looks set to be the hallmark of the REF. Bibliometrics will be used to inform expert review rather than replacing it, but subject discipline will be key with more relevance to science and medicine.

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