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Independent review of the role of metrics in research assessment

This page summarises work HEFCE is carrying out to review the role of metrics in the assessment and management of research. This work will be of interest to anyone with a professional interest in research assessment and funding.

What is metrics-based research assessment?

Metrics is the quantitative analysis of scientific and scholarly research outputs and their impacts. Metrics include a variety of measures and statistical methods for assessing the quality and broader impact of scientific and scholarly research. 

About the review

The independent review of the role of metrics in research assessment will consider how well metrics can be used across different academic disciplines to assess the excellence of research undertaken in the higher education sector.

The outcomes will be of interest to those who undertake research and will inform the work of HEFCE and the other UK higher education funding bodies as they prepare future iterations of the Research Excellence Framework.

Call for evidence

As part of the review, we launched a call for evidence to gather views and evidence relating to the use of metrics in research assessment and management. The deadline for responses was Monday 30 June.

Conduct of the review 

The review is being chaired by James Wilsdon, Professor of Science and Democracy at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), University of Sussex.

Professor Wilsdon is supported by an independent steering group.

Terms of reference and membership

Download the TOR as MS Word (30 KB)

Papers from steering group meetings

Meeting 1: 1 April 2014

Meeting 2: 27 May 2014

Meeting 3: 15 July 2014


Download the Agenda for third SG meeting 150714 DOCX as PDF (134 KB)

Paper 10: minutes of the steerting group meeting 15 July 2014

Download the Paper 10 14 Minutes of second SG meeting as PDF (148 KB)

Paper 11: timetable/project plan 15 July 2014

Download the Paper 11 14 Timetable Project Plan 150714 as PDF (89 KB)

Paper 12: stakeholder engagement strategic planning

Download the Paper 12 14 Stakeholder engagement strategic planning as PDF (153 KB)

Paper 13: call for evidence - summary of responses

Download the Paper 13 14 Call for evidence - summary of responses as PDF (232 KB)

Paper 14: draft outline for final report on metrics

Download the Paper 14 14 draft outline for final report on metrics as PDF (93 KB)

Paper 15: summary of meetings with David Willetts, Minister of State for Universities and Science

Download the Paper 15 14 Summary of meetings with DW as PDF (236 KB)

Paper 16: UCL workshop

Download the Paper 16 14 UCL workshop as PDF (96 KB)

Further information

For further information about the review, contact Alex Herbert or Kate Turton (metrics@hefce.ac.uk).

Page last updated 3 July 2014

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