Oxford is better than Cambridge

Oxford is better than Cambridge

Oxford University has nudged past its traditional rival Cambridge by being named Britain-'s best research university. The 2014 Research Excellence...

London: Oxford University has nudged past its traditional rival Cambridge by being named Britain's best research university. The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), to be released here on Thursday, is used as a basis for government funding allocation and has had an Oxbridge stronghold over the years.

"Research is an intensely competitive activity and we are looking at and responding to worldwide competition in the world of research, the recruitment of leading academics and outstanding students, so there will be no resting on laurels,” Oxford University's Vice-Chancellor Andrew Hamilton said. This year, however, some of London's leading universities are posing a strong challenge to Oxbridge domination with University College London (UCL) and London School of Economics (LSE) edging up the scales. In fact, UCL beat Cambridge to take second position.

According to an analysis of the study done by 'Research Fortnight', Oxford University is set to take the largest share of allocated university funding, after almost half of the research produced by its 2,400 academic staff was given the top four-star rating by panels of judges and experts in each subject, while the output of University College London's 2,600 staff placed it above Cambridge's 2,100. Among the major London institutions, Imperial College in London also scored high with 90 per cent of its research activities classed as world-leading or internationally excellent.

On the other end of the scale, universities in the north of England took a hammering over the quality of their research, and academics there now face the prospect of being made redundant after several institutions slipped down the rankings used to allocate funding. UK universities minister Greg Clark said, "Britain's outstanding reputation in research is founded on excellence. A rigorous and unflinching review by fellow experts assures that excellence; this is why the REF is such a crucial driver of quality." The REF measured the quality of research from more than 52,000 academics in 154 universities.

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