The research power of Agriculture, Food and Veterinary Sciences at Scotland Rural College (SRUC) and the University of Edinburgh has been ranked number one in the UK based on quality.
The assessment by the Research Excellence Framework (REF2021) maintains both institution's positions as the strongest providers in these subject areas.
REF2021's new report, released this week, evaluates the quality and impact of research in the UK’s higher education institutions.
Research ‘power’ is an overarching measure of research quality and volume. SRUC said it had increased both the quality and size of the joint submission since the last REF in 2014, highlighting the 'scale and excellence' of their combined research capabilities.
All 11 impact case studies submitted – eight of which involved SRUC research – were classified as ‘world leading’ (receiving the top 4* REF grading) or ‘internationally excellent’ (3*) in terms of their impact on wider society.
All – 100% – of the research environment was also classified as world class or internationally excellent, highlighting the outstanding quality, equipment and culture of the research base.
A total of 87 percent of overall research activity was ranked as 4* or 3*, REF2021's report shows.
Professor Wayne Powell, principal of the college, said the impact of SRUC's research was globally important and of the highest quality.
“This outstanding result highlights SRUC’s unique position as a tertiary institution which delivers economic and social benefits relevant to both Scotland and the world.
“Our combined world-leading research, advisory service and teaching excellence enables us to address the grand challenges facing the planet - including climate change and access to nutritious food and clean water.
“We are exceptionally proud that the collective strength and depth of our agriculture, food and veterinary sciences research is reflected in the top research power ranking."