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Message from Professor Teresa Rees CBE AcS Former Pro Vice Chancellor for Research

Professor Teresa Rees CBE

The University’s priority is to promote academic excellence rooted in world-leading research and scholarship. Our research strategy emphasises:

Building Capacity: Much of our investment, particularly the President’s Scholarships, the University Research Institutes, the Campus Horizons Programme, Advanced Research Computing at Cardiff (ARCCA) and the Research Opportunities Programme for undergraduate students is geared towards building our capacity to do excellent research. Following the links below will give you a sense of the breadth and range of our activities in these areas.

Cardiff staff are actively engaged with the development and implementation of the Concordat to support the career development of researchers; we are working to ensure that our provision for researchers at all career stages supports their development.

The President’s Research Scholarships are a recognition of the importance of a vibrant postgraduate research community to Cardiff. This investment will mean that 72 new PhD students will have funding to study across the range of Cardiff’s disciplines. This is part of a wider effort to increase the number of high calibre PGR students studying here.

The University seeks to recruit world-class academic staff, many of whom have been recognised as leaders in their field as recipients of honours and medals. Amongst our colleagues we include Nobel Prize winners, Fellows of the Royal Society, the British Academy and the Royal Historical Society, as well as Academicians of the Academy of Social Sciences, Royal Academy of Engineering and other learned societies. We look to these colleagues to provide academic leadership and support to our research community.

The recent commitment to ring-fencing a significant allocation from the University’s Strategic Investment Funds for the replacement of large research equipment will contribute substantially to the sustainability of our research infrastructure, and ensure that our staff have access to the best possible equipment.

Key links include:

Facilitating Interdisciplinarity: The University sees its strong disciplinary groupings as fertile ground for interdisciplinary study; tackling the major research challenges of the day. Collaborative activity ranges from virtual and informal networks of staff with cognate interests through to fully-funded research centres and institutes, with support available from the University at each stage on that spectrum. Our investment in research networks has led to strong research teams that have gone on to attract considerable research funding. Recent successes include the award from Arthritis Research UK for a translational project bringing together bench scientists, clinicians, dentists and occupational therapists. HEFCW, the Welsh Assembly Government and Economic and Social Research Council are funding the highly innovative Wales Institute for Socio Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERD) to produce and analyse data that will have a far reaching impact on informing evidence-based policy.

Our investment in the three new University Research Institutes in Neuroscience, Stem Cell Cancer Research and Sustainable Places in each case builds on a history of substantial funded collaboration across disciplinary boundaries from major funders including the MRC, Cancer Research UK and the ESRC.

Key links include:

Promoting Internationalism: The University’s international research profile is secured through our large cohort of international staff and students and through collaboration with international partners, many of whom are based in the world’s top universities and research institutions. International collaboration spans the whole range from individual academics researching and publishing together to large multi-national teams working on funded research projects.

For many years the Research Committee has allocated funding through its International Collaboration Awards for individual academics, particularly those at an early stage in their research careers, to travel to spend time in institutions overseas to develop their research. The Distinguished Visiting Scholar Scheme has brought many world-leading academics to Cardiff over the last 10 years.

Our relationship with both the Fulbright and the Marshall Commissions means that annually we welcome these prestigious scholars to spend time in Cardiff.

Key links include:

Delivering Impact: We are committed to ensuring that the potential benefits from research undertaken in Cardiff are widely felt beyond the University. Cardiff is distinctive in the breadth of its engagement with a wide range of professions thus ensuring that the latest research is informing professional practice in many areas.

Our links with the Welsh Assembly Government means that our research is directly informing policy development and benefitting the people of Wales particularly in the areas of Low Carbon Economy, Health and Biosciences, Advanced Engineering and Manufacturing and Digital Economy (ICT) identified as WAG priorities. Equally, outcomes from research funding from UK government and EU are influencing policy at a UK national and European level.

Professional assistance is available from colleagues in Research and Commercial Development Division and Communications and International Relations Division.

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