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Collaboration for global benefit

Anton Muscatelli

There is a drive towards greater research concentration and specialisation in the UK. This is inevitable at a time of tight public spending. In England, the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s quality-related allocations have shifted the balance towards rewarding the top-rated research. There has been a similar trend in Scotland through the Scottish Funding Council’s Research Excellence Grant allocations.

While research-council resources have been protected in relative terms, it is evident that the councils’ will, in future, concentrate on longer, larger grants to proven centres of excellence as a way of supporting the very best UK research. The question is, what impact will this shift have? Will there be an impact on competition among UK universities? Will there be an impact on the UK’s ability to compete internationally?

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