British University insiders have been in a state of considerable excitement now that the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 2008 results have been published.
Briefly, the RAE is a periodic audit (the last one was seven years ago) of research quality in universities throughout the UK. Research-active programmes and departments submit examples work published by their academic staff, and these are read and assessed by panels of subject experts. The ensuing grades form the basis for government research funding for the next research cycle –to say nothing of the “bragging rights” of the departments concerned!
The School of Humanities (of which we are a part) provided the two strongest submissions within the college for RAE 2008. As an inter-disciplinary operation, The Centre for Cultural, Media and Creative Industries Research did not make an individual submission for 2008, but contributed to both Film Studies and American Studies. In Film Studies, a remakable 85% of the work submitted was rated “world-leading” or “internationally excellent”, while in American Studies, 50% of the work was similarly graded “world-leading” or “internationally excellent”. This is the first year that either Film or American Studies have been entered for the RAE, so it’s all the more impressive.
We therefore congratulate our colleagues in our related disciplines –while at the same time feeling just a little proud of ourselves.
Dr Richard Howells, Director, CMCI