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Credit: OU

Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF)

The University of Oxford is the world’s oldest English-speaking university, has been at the forefront of research, scholarship and innovation for over 850 years and is today a vibrant hub of internationally-leading work spanning all aspects of science, medicine, the social sciences and humanities. Our mission is the advancement of learning by teaching and research, and its dissemination by every means; and our goal is to make a difference at all scales, from the local to the global, influencing technology, policy and culture for the benefit of society. We aim to excel in every knowledge exchange and innovation mechanism to deliver these goals, including activities measured by the KEF metrics and beyond.

This page contains supporting links and further information on the strategies, support, activities and outcomes described in the University of Oxford's KEF narrative submissions. The full narratives are published by Research England and are available through the KEF dashboard.

Institutional context

Links in the narrative statement

Additional information

Details of relevant initiatives started after the KEF narrative submission will be added here in due course.

Local growth and regeneration

Oxford University contributes to Local Growth and Regeneration (LGR) by working collaboratively with regional stakeholders. Together we have identified opportunities for economic and social gain that the University’s research and knowledge exchange communities can help to deliver, co-developing strategies, plans and projects that make a tangible difference.

There is significant support provided to enable researchers and students to contribute directly to LGR through innovation, entrepreneurial activities and business collaborations, built upon world-leading research. This includes new innovation buildings, the creation of spin-out and start-up companies and provision of business education programmes. We catalyse innovation and investment within the local ecosystem, delivering economic and societal benefits and supporting Oxfordshire and the UK to become a beacon for further investment.

Links in the narrative statement

Additional information

Regional representation by senior members of the University

Direct engagement in local networks and groups and other local partnership structures is one of the key elements of our approach, and supports an institutional level understanding of the growth needs of the Oxfordshire region. Senior members of the University are directly involved in the structures that are primarily responsible for defining, designing, delivering and driving the growth needs of Oxfordshire.

  • The Pro-Vice-Chancellor for research is the Board member representing higher education on the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).
  • The Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Innovation sits on the LEP, innovation sub-group
  • The Director of Centre for Skills Knowledge & Organisational Performance sits on the skills sub-group.
  • The Deputy Director of Research Services (Knowledge Exchange and Engagement) sits on the Local Industrial Strategy Group and co-Chairs the Oxford-Cambridge Arc University Group.
  • The Head of Partnerships and Programmes, in museums sits on the culture and visitor economy sub-group.
  • The Head of Environmental Sustainability on the clean growth sub-group.
  • The Head of Knowledge Exchange and Impact Team sits on the LEP business support group, our and the recently constituted Oxfordshire COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan Task force.

In addition we have jointly funded a senior post with the LEP to develop stronger links, inform and pursue the development of robust funding opportunities, putting us centrally engaged with the structures that determine the needs of the region’s agenda for growth.

Details of relevant initiatives started after the KEF narrative submission will be added here in due course.

Public and community engagement

The University of Oxford’s mission is to facilitate excellence in research, teaching, engagement and innovation to realise beneficial outcomes for society at a local, regional, national and global scale. The University has an outstanding reputation for its research and teaching and our aim is also to become a leader in engagement. At the heart of our approach is partnership working between the University’s Academic Divisions, Research Services, Gardens, Libraries and Museums and external organisations to support staff and students to value, lead and participate in public and community engagement. Our key ways of working include provision of engagement opportunities, funding, reward and recognition, training and fostering networks and partnerships. As a result, there is a flourishing ongoing programme of high-quality and impactful public and community engagement.

Links in the narrative statement

  1. University Strategic Plan 2018-2023
  2. Public Engagement with Research Strategic Plan
  3. Knowledge Exchange Strategy
  4. The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH) strategy
  5. University Academic Champion for PER [see ‘Academic Champion' tab]
  6. Specialist engagement staff
  7. The Schwarzman Centre will be Oxford’s new home for the humanities with state-of-the-art academic, exhibition and performance spaces.
  8. Reuben College - A new graduate college dedicated to fostering interdisciplinary exchange within an inclusive, innovative and engagement-oriented community.
  9. Public Engagement with Research Conference
  10. PE training programme
  11. Community Engagement training
  12. Medical Sciences Public Engagement Network
  13. Public Engagement with Research Leadership Scheme
  14. PER Laboratory
  15. Best practice engagement animations
  16. Best practice engagement case studies
  17. PER Seed Fund
  18. Community Engagement grants
  19. Enriching Engagement project summaries
  20. ESRC Impact Acceleration Account
  21. University's ESRC Impact Acceleration Account
  22. Social Enterprise Awards
  23. Wellcome Trust Centres
  24. Vice-Chancellor's Public Engagement with Research Awards
  25. Recognition of Distinction
  26. Signatories of San Francisco Declaration of Research Assessment (DORA)
  27. IF-Oxford
  28. Oxford Scientist writing competition
  29. Cowley Road Works
  30. I'm a Researcher
  31. "Get involved with our research"
  32. Oxford Sparks
  33. Oxplore
  34. The Conversation
  35. Kwibuka Rwanda and Remembering Rwanda
  36. Mindfulness and Resilience in Adolescence (MYRIAD)
  37. Department for Continuing Education
  38. Continuing Professional Development
  39. Health in the Backyard
  40. Multaka-Oxford
  41. The Oxford Foundry (OxFo)
  42. Many evaluation reports available on request
  43. National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement
  44. NCCPE EDGE analysis
  45. NCCPE qualitative evaluation
  46. Evaluation reports available on request
  47. European Researchers' Night Curiosity Carnival
  48. Curiosity Carnival summary evaluation
  49. The Zooniverse citizen science projects
  50. Science:Art competition
  51. Parent-facing engagement

Additional information

Launched in February 2021 the Public Engagement Facilitators Network (PEFN) is a University-wide network, which creates opportunities for networking, shared learning and best practice in all things Public Engagement with Research.

The PER Leadership Scheme was a new pilot programme, which ran 2019-April 2021, for academics to take on a leadership role in a culture change project for their departments and faculties to enhance support for PER. The scheme was targeted at those who have a strong interest in PER, who want the opportunity to demonstrate their leadership skills within an academic environment and to explore new ways of working through facilitating change. The scheme was renamed the PER Culture Change Fund in 2021 and reopened for further applications.

The scheme launched in August 2019, and the 7 (initially 8) PER Leaders participated in training from a variety of internal and external PER and leadership professionals throughout the year; and were supported to develop and deliver PER culture change plans in their Department with up to £5k each of flexible funding to initiate PER-focused initiatives. The PER Leaders were given an extension to the end of April 2021 to give more time to facilitate culture change activities; and in some cases adjust plans as a response to Covid-19 restrictions.

Oxford University renewed its membership of The Conversation in 2020 to provide an online platform that enabled research students and researchers to engage the public with their research through written articles; and enable researchers and research students to benefit from training and workshops provided by the Editors of The Conversation as part of the membership package.