Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF)

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The Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) proposes a third pillar of university activity assessment alongside the TEF and REF. PraxisAuril is engaging proactively on behalf of its members throughout the consultation and implementation process. The KEF is being led by Research England with support from UUK, PraxisAuril and the NCUB.

The KEF is an intitutional-level exercise to inform and assess knowldge exchange activities of UK Higher Education Institutions. It comprises two parts: a KEF Concordat, led by Professor Trevor McMillan (Keele), and KEF metrics exercise led by Professor Richard Jones (Sheffield). It emerges from a longer-standing knowledge exchange framework initiative, started by the (then) HEFCE in January 2016. One of the key outputs of this was the McMillan Review of Technology Transfer which concluded that UK universities were internationally competitive in their technology transfer practice but identified the need for stronger leadership in KE and improved evidence to understand ecosytem and industry sector factors in successful technology transfer. To date, the main measure of knowledge exchange has been the annual HEBCI data collection (see the HESA website). HEIF strategies, for English HEIS in receipt of funding, provide qualitative insight into university KE approaches: a summary review of trategies was commissioned by Research England (then HEFCE, archived web content). The NCUB has piloted an alternative approach with its Collaboration Progress Monitor, which draws on sources of publicly available data to observe trends across 15 metrics.  
   
A consultation on the use of metrics in the KEF concluded in January 2018. You can read PraxisAuril's contribution to the consultation here. A summary of consultation responses and a technical report on the proposed cluster approach, was released by Research England in November 2018. PraxisAuril's main contact for KEF-related matters is Tamsin Mann, Head of Policy. 
 

Conference report: Preparing for the Knowledge Exchange Framework in UK HEIs

Professor Trevor McMillan, Chair of Research England’s KEF Steering Group, set the scene and trailed the KEF Concordat, stressing the importance of measuring and evaluating how universities do Knowledge Exchange (KE).  He identified three key actions for university management: Make a clear statement of the role of KE in your institution; support staff in delivering to that role; and provide clear access points and policies to enable business to engage.  Evaluation should involve self-assessment, leading to a sharing of best practice and, where applicable, improved HEIF strategie

Research England releases more details on KEF proposals

Research England has published three documents that will help higher education institutions (HEIs) prepare for the upcoming consultation on the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF). The documents are: 

Summary KEF call for evidence responses: key points that have emerged from evidence submitted to Research England on suitable approaches to – and data to use in – the KEF. 

PraxisAuril responds to the KEF consultation (Feb 2018)

PraxisAuril members have helped to inform our response to the KEF consultation launched by HEFCE's Technical Advisory Group. Since 2015 we have worked with HEFCE to understand better the characteristics of good and effective practice in KE and support whole heartedly the work of the McMillan Group on which some of our members sit. We welcome the KEF as a next step in this work and will continue to engage fully to represent our members’ views as expert KE practitioners working across the UK's university sector. 

We see the aims of the KEF as:

PraxisAuril welcomes the KEF & Technical Advisory Group (Nov 2017)

HEFCE has started work on the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) which will form a third pillar of university assessment alongside the TEF and REF. A Technical Advisory Group, Chaired by Professor Richard Jones, will take evidence from the sector before handing over to Research England in April 2018.