Academic Research Staff Notices

REF 2021 Code of Practice – draft Code for consultation

Dear All,

HEIs submitting to REF 2021 are required to produce a Code of Practice that sets out the University’s approach to identifying staff and selecting outputs for submission to REF 2021. This approach must be fundamentally fair and meet the principles of being transparent, consistent, accountable and inclusive, as well as meeting the technical requirements of the REF 2021 framework. The Code must be agreed by staff representative groups and approved through the University’s committee structures before being submitted to the funding councils on 7th June 2019 who must also sign off the Code.

The code is required to present the following:

  1. The Institutional Context for the Code
  2. The agreed policy and procedures for identifying staff with significant responsibility for research in REF 2021
  3. Policy and procedures for determining whether staff meet the definition of an independent researcher
  4. The policy and procedures for the fair and transparent selection of outputs in REF 2021, including approaches to supporting staff with circumstances that may have impacted on their ability to engage in research

We have developed a draft of our REF 2021 Code of Practice and we are now seeking your views on this draft Code. The draft Code of Practice can be found on our REF 2021 Blackboard pages. You can request a paper copy of the Code by emailing For those who were unable to attend the staff briefings on REF 2021 last week (which included details on our Code), a recording of one of the briefings will be made available through our REF 2021 Blackboard pages later in the week.

From 8th April  to 22nd April, you can provide your thoughts and comments on the Code via an anonymous online form (you will need to login to your One Drive account but the submitted form is anonymous and will not be linked to your account). If you any questions about the Code, you can email

Best wishes,


Dr John-Paul Wilson
Deputy Pro Vice Chancellor Research

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