Vice-Chancellor's Office

Updates and events both on and off campus

Monthly message February 2015

📥  Messages

At the end of last year we received the long awaited news on the REF (Research Excellence Framework) exercise in which we performed outstandingly well. As I said at the time, these results confirm the excellence of our research and further enhance our reputation as a leading University.

The 2014 REF assessed the impact as well as the quality of UK universities’ research. On 19 January 2015, we received more detailed feedback on our impact case studies and it is now even clearer that our research is very strong in delivering real-world impact in economic, social and cultural terms.

An exceptional 96 per cent of our impact submitted to the REF was judged to be 4* (Outstanding) or 3* (Very considerable) and demonstrated the strength and breadth of our collaborations with companies, government departments and policymakers. The case studies we submitted were based on research from across the University and in order to be eligible for submission had to show a direct link to research that was at least internationally recognised. (more…)


VC visits Mechanical Engineering

📥  Visits to departments

Professor Tony Miles, Head of Department, gathered a group of staff including the Department Executive Committee and recent academic appointments to welcome the Vice-Chancellor on her latest visit.

VC visits Mech Eng

Dr Carl Sangan shows the VC the gas turbine rig

Tony gave a detailed overview of the department including the recent Industrial Advisory Board and staff awayday, which focused on meeting the department’s future challenges. These included the REF2020, teaching activities and priority areas such as increasing the number of women in engineering.

He emphasised that while the department was pleased with the outcome of REF2014, there was no room for complacency and staff needed to ensure that they remained focussed.

The Vice-Chancellor congratulated colleagues on such "an analytical view of the challenges and solutions for REF performance".

Two of the department’s recent academic recruits then put their research in the spotlight. (more…)


VC pays visit to staff in Economics

📥  Visits to departments

Head of Department Professor Michael Finus opened the Vice-Chancellor’s visit to Economics by introducing Dame Glynis to a ‘nervous but excited’ audience of staff and PhD students.

VC visits Economics

Dame Glynis speaks to staff in Economics

Michael gave a whirlwind overview of the department, its strategic aims and its future strategy before introducing colleagues to give brief presentations on their work across learning, teaching and research.

Dr Javier Rivas, Director of Research, presented the new Research Reward Scheme in which the department has created their own model in order to support world-class research activity and impact.  (more…)


Fifth annual celebration of our research

📥  Celebrating successes

A collection of our rising stars of research came together in the Council Chamber to give an insight into their work at the fifth annual Vice-Chancellor’s Research Day. 

Standing: Dr Danielle Wain, Dr Jonathan du Bois, Dr Neill Campbell, Dr Simone Giansante, Dr Wali Aslam, Dr Ram Sharma, Dr Ceri Brown; Seated: Dr Tim Rogers, Dr Sally Adams, Dr Thomas Roulet, Dr Hannah Family

Professor Jane Millar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) introduced the session as “a celebration of our research and a glimpse of the future.”

Dr Ceri Brown, from the Department of Education, challenged policymakers’ assumptions about the value of sanctions such as fines to improve school attendance and highlighted the challenges for school children in poverty.

Dr Jonathan du Bois, from the Department of Mechanical Engineering presented on hybrid testing, a technique for coupling computer and physical simulations that allows subcomponents to be removed from complex setups - like a helicopter - and tested in the lab across a range of conditions. (more…)


Preview: VC's report to Senate - 4 Feb 2015


📥  On campus

The purpose of the VC's report is to update Senate with recent developments which affect the University.

1.             Research Excellence Framework

The University’s REF results are the best ever. This is a tribute to our outstanding academics who have proved their excellence in research as well as achieving the best results in the National Student Survey. We are in the top 10 of six of the 13 Units of Assessment in which we participated in the REF and in the top 20 in eleven. Colleagues in the Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering should be warmly congratulated for achieving first place in the ranking for Architecture, Built Environment and Planning. A full report will be presented at the meeting. (more…)


Vice-Chancellor visits Human Resources

📥  Visits to departments

Dame Glynis learned more about human resources, staff development, health & safety and even finger painting on the last of her departmental visits of 2014.

Pauline Young, Childcare Services Manager, began the visit to Human Resources in the Baby Room of our busy Westwood Nursery. The Baby Room takes children from six-months-old and on the day of the visit was full of enthusiastic pots and pans percussionists.

VC visit HR

Dame Glynis makes the most of her HR visit

Harriette Perkins, Nursery Room Leader, then introduced the children aged 18 months to three years who were busy finger painting. Dame Glynis got a chance to join in the fun in the Pre-School Room when she was given ‘stirring duties’ by two little boys making cupcakes. Tara Cook leads the room which offers more focused play to help the older children prepare for school. (more…)


REF2014 results are our best ever

📥  Celebrating successes, Messages

I am delighted to be able to share with you the results of REF2014 which confirm the excellence of the research at Bath and further enhance our reputation as a leading research University.


We have performed outstandingly well:

  • 32 per cent of our submitted research activity has achieved the highest possible REF classification of 4*, defined as world-leading in terms of originality, significance and rigour.
  • 87 per cent of submitted research activity was graded 4*/3* (defined as world-leading/ internationally excellent).
  • Our overall GPA (grade point average, which provides a summary measure of the profile above) is 3.17.



Consolidating relationships with Zhejiang

📥  Representing the University

Our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell, and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Internationalisation), Professor Colin Grant, welcomed an academic delegation from Zhejiang University to our campus on Monday 8 December.

The Zhejiang University delegation was led by their Executive Vice President, Professor Yonghua Song, and consisted of academics from Engineering, Pharmacy & Pharmacology and International Relations.

Staff from Bath and Zhejiang in 4 West

The visit was aimed at consolidating relationships in two key areas, Electonic & Electrical Engineering and Pharmacy & Pharmacology.  The visit included an inaugural joint scientific workshop titled ‘Future Electrical Power System Research’, led by Professor Furong Li, from our Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering. (more…)


VC pays a visit to PoLIS colleagues

📥  Visits to departments

The penultimate department visit of 2014 began with the Vice-Chancellor joining around 50 staff from PoLIS for tea, cakes and a chat in the newly revamped 1 West building.

VC visits PoLIS

Dame Glynis and PoLIS staff members

Dame Glynis mingled with colleagues including International Studies staff Dr Ainius Lasas and Teaching Fellow Arash Heydarian Pashakhanlou, who was due to receive his PhD the following week; and Drs Elena Trincanato and Adalgisa Giorgio, from the Italian Studies team, Isabella Stefanutti, Course Director in the Foreign Languages Centre and Irena Holdsworth who coordinates the Routes into Languages initiative.

Professor Charlie Lees, Head of Department, formally welcomed the Vice-Chancellor before introducing presentations that showcased the breadth of work undertaken by the department: (more…)