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Cautious welcome for KEF plans

Universities and higher education policy specialists have cautiously welcomed proposals for the Knowledge Exchange Framework, a forthcoming exercise that will assess universities’ relationships with businesses.

According to the KEF plans, which Research England put out to consultation on 9 January, institutions would not be ranked on a single overall score. Instead they would be measured on performance in seven categories (see below).

Proposed metrics within these categories would assess, among other things, university academics’ joint research authorship with non-academic partners as a proportion of total outputs, and academics’ “contribution to collaborative research”. There are also metrics assessing aspects of business links such as a university’s contract research income and graduate startup rates.

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