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University Committees

Research Excellence Framework Strategy Committee

Standing Orders

Sub-Committee of the Research Committee.

These Standing Orders should be read in conjunction with the General Committee section of Standing Orders available on the University's website.


The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) Chair
The Dean and Deputy to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research)
Distinguished senior researchers, including former panel members, elected members of learned societies etc, reflecting a balance between disciplines and including members with interdisciplinary expertise (nine in total)
One or more Deputy Heads of Faculty or other faculty representatives appointed by the Research Committee (three in total)
The Head of REF


The Secretary will normally be a member of the Research Division.


The Sub-Committee will normally meet six times a year and more frequently as required.


The Research Excellence Framework Strategy Committee is a sub-committee of Research Committee: it is responsible for overseeing Durham University's strategy for, and submission to, the Research Excellence Framework (REF).

Terms of Reference

The Sub-Committee shall:

(a) maximise the benefit of the REF to the University;

(b) make recommendations on financial decisions for targeted assistance (e.g. extension of sabbatical leave/teaching assistance) or providing assistance for external reviews of research outputs;

(c) make strategic decisions concerning the size and scope of the REF submission including allocation of staff to units of assessment, outputs, impact and environment consistent with HEFCE’s Guidance.

(d) ensure that information relevant to decisions about REF strategy is disseminated to academic/research staff;

(e) request information that will identify strengths and weaknesses in the submission and having identified weaknesses to ensure that solutions to improve the university's submission in the areas identified are put in place;

(f) seek guidance from relevant individuals/institutions to ensure that the committee remains informed – to the best of its ability – of REF guidance, criteria and initiatives;

(g) comply with all equal opportunities legislation in REF submission preparations and decision making and develop any Code of Practice as required by the REF guidance;

(h) report on its responsibilities to Research Committee.