University of Northampton makes History with ‘world-leading’ research

Date 16.11.2015

History research carried out by the University of Northampton has been officially recognised as world-leading in quality, following the results of the UK-wide Research Excellence Framework (REF).

The rigorous external assessment of all UK research has assessed the University of Northampton’s History research as being ‘4 star’; the top rating, classifying the work as ‘world leading in terms of originality, significance and rigour’. This achievement places the University of Northampton’s History department in the UK Top 50 for research, a rise of 13 places.

Professor Jon Stobart​, research leader for History, commented: “It is great that our research has been officially recognised as world-leading. We have real strengths across a range of themes and periods, but particularly in the areas of gender history in the 17th and 18th centuries, World War I military intelligence, radicalism in the UK and in east Africa, consumption and material culture, and crime. Our students benefit from this cutting-edge research which we feed directly into our teaching programmes.”

The University of Northampton entered 27 examples of History research from 8 members of staff into the 2014 REF, for scrutiny by an expert panel.

The REF assessed the quality of research conducted by 154 UK universities between 2008 and 2013. Previously known as the Research Assessment Exercise and last conducted in 2008, the results of the 2014 REF will be used by funding bodies to allocate future research funding to universities. In their submissions, universities had to demonstrate the impact of their work outside of academia, showing how the research has had an effect on society, culture, the environment or the economy.

‘World-leading’ research was also identified in the University of Northampton’s submissions for the Allied Health Professions, Art and Design; English Language and Literature;  Geography and Education units of assessment.  ‘International excellence’ was identified in the submissions in Business and Management Studies; Engineering and Psychology units of assessment.