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KEF2: Harper Adams still excels in working with business and research partnerships

Posted 28 September

“I am delighted with the latest round of KEF, which shows that we are holding our position, staying above average in the sector."

Graphic showing Top 10% for working with business, Top 10 % for research partnerships and Top 20% for local growth and regeneration. UKRI logo and #KEF22

The second iteration of the Knowledge Exchange Framework was released today - with Harper Adams University again in the Top 10 per cent in its cluster for Working with Business and Research Partnerships.

The University is part of a cluster called STEM, a group of specialist institutions covering Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Harper Adams is above the cluster average in six out of the seven assessed areas of activity.

The KEF release coincided with the publication of a GuildHE report on the impact of research and knowledge exchange at small and specialist universities – and just after Harper Adams enrolled its highest-ever number of Degree Apprentices onto programmes developed with industry partners.

Welcoming the outcomes, Head of Enterprise Business Services, Clare Keegan, said: “I am delighted with the latest round of KEF, which shows that we are holding our position, staying above average in the sector. Some of our newer initiatives won’t yet be reflected in the data collection, so I’m really excited for the year ahead and to see how our performance improves.”

Harper Adams University’s position is supported by new developments in research and knowledge exchange with industry, such as the School of Sustainable Food and Farming. The University scored highly for research partnerships thanks to a variety of sector-leading research projects, journal publications and knowledge exchange collaborations with industry.

Clare adds: “Universities that had previously submitted were unable to amend the narratives from KEF 2020, so scores for Public and Community Engagement and Local Growth and Regeneration are based on older versions and won’t yet consider our work with Local Authorities, and more recent developments in the region that have encouraged Foreign Direct investment to co-locate and work with the University at the Agri-Epi Centre and the Newport Innovation Park.

“More work with how we measure Graduate Start-Ups could elevate this position further, and we are pleased to be delivering a third round of the CULITIVATE programme this year as well working on two new projects to attract new entrants to farming that will be announced soon.”

The aim of the KEF, published by UKRI, is to increase efficiency and effectiveness in the use of public funding for knowledge exchange (KE) and to further a culture of continuous improvement in universities. It will allow universities to better understand and improve their own performance, as well as provide businesses and other users with more information to help them access the world-class knowledge and expertise embedded in English Higher Education Providers (HEPs).

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