REF 2021 (Research Excellence Framework)

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the current system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The most recent exercise took place in 2014 and the full UK-wide results are available here. The results determine the selective annual allocation of quality-related (QR) grant distribution from the Higher Education Funding Councils for Wales (HEFCW), England (HEFCE), the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland (DEL). The assessment provides accountability for public investment in research and produces evidence of the benefits of this investment. The assessment outcomes provide benchmarking information and establish reputational yardsticks for use within the higher education sector and for public information. The REF assesses research excellence through a process of discipline-based expert review, informed by appropriate quantitative indicators.

*We are in the next research review period and all information relating the REF2021, as it develops, will be posted here.


Research Assessment Manager

Claire Victoria Davis, Research Assessment Manager, based in REO, is the central contact point for all REF related issues across the Institution and plays a significant role in the leadership of research monitoring for Bangor with the PVC Research and Enterprise. Claire managed Bangor’s Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) submission in 2008 and Research Excellence Framework (REF) submission in 2014. If you have any questions or queries regarding the REF or Research Assessment in general please contact Claire.

Contact details

Research and Enterprise Office (REO)
Bangor University
Room 207, 1st Floor Eryri Building, Management Centre, College Road, Bangor, LL57 2DG
Tel: 01248 388518             Email:

Some useful REF related links for Bangor Researchers


What is PURE?

PURE is a Research Information Management System. You may access PURE from the following URL This system aims to provide solutions for both researchers themselves as well as back-office staff administering research within the University. The PURE system supports organisational efficiency and also provides a professional shop window for the University's research activity through a new research portal PURE draws together research information from both internal and external sources and facilitates an evidence-based approach to Bangor's research and collaboration strategies, assessment exercises RCUK and HEFCE open access compliance and real time visibility of current research activity.

Review of REF2014

To prepare for the development of the next REF an Evaluation of REF 2014

Research Outputs

Bangor Repository - PURE

All Bangor researchers are requested to update their outputs via Bangor’s PURE system as soon as a publication has been accepted for publication. The Repository team will help ensure your publications are available in Bangor’s PURE repository which is part of the PURE research portal.

Open-access and the next REF 

For the next REF certain research outputs should be made open-access to be eligible for submission. This requirement will apply to journal articles and conference proceedings.

Open access in the next Research Excellence Framework: policy adjustments and qualifications – the UK HE funding bodies have announced a new policy for open access in the post-2014 REF. The policy currently states that outputs accepted from 1 April 2016 onwards can be deposited in a repository at any point between acceptance and up to three months after the date of publication. They plan that outputs accepted from 1 April 2018 onwards would have to be deposited within three months of acceptance. [updated November 2016]. For more information on support available for open access in Bangor please visit the Library’s open-access pages here.

Support from the Library

For information about all research support available from the Library including help with the Repository, Open Access and Data Management issues, please visit here.

Current reports on Metrics and research assessment

– Building on Success and Learning from Experience. An Independent Review of the Research Excellence Framework. Lord Nicholas Stern. []

Independent review of the role of metrics in research assessment and Metrics cannot replace peer review in the next REF

Impact from Research

REF2014 was the first exercise to assess the impact of research outside of academia. Impact was defined for REF2014 as ‘an effect on, change or benefit to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life, beyond academia’. The REF2014 impact case studies have been analysed and this work has produced a searchable tool -The REF impact case study database

Also available is a report that captures some initial analysis of the 6,679 impact case studies that were submitted to REF2014 – The nature, scale and beneficiaries of research impact

Impact of Bangor University Research

For details of impact from Bangor’s research, and support available for Bangor researchers to develop their impact, please see REO’s Impact section.