In November 2021 the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) appointed Halpin Partnership (Halpin), to undertake research and evaluate the project management and leadership of its REF2021 submission and make recommendations to support and improve future submissions. The University has a well-founded and clear Research and Innovation sub-strategy for the period 2021-28, with a positive vision for the role of the University’s research community. There is considerable buy in to the ideas and intent in the strategy across the University community and a desire to learn from the work undertaken for REF2021.
Our evaluation explored:
• what went well,
• what could have been done better,
• whether governance structures were fit for purpose,
• whether communications with the range of stakeholders were clear and frequent enough.
• An opportunity for all involved to provide feedback and reflect on the process
• Shared understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the REF2021 strategy, process and governance
• A set of prioritised recommendations for the development of research and impact activities
• Lessons for future research assessments