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RAE 3/98 - Annex A

Timetable for the consultation and summary of issues

1. The task group wishes to seek views from organisations with an interest in health-related research and the RAE. This document is being sent to heads of all higher education institutions, but responses are specifically sought from those that submitted to UOAs 1,2,3,4,5,9,10,11 in 1996, or are contemplating submitting to these units in 2001. It is also being sent to other organisations with an interest in these questions (a list is available from the HEFCE). The views of other organisations wishing to participate in this exercise are welcomed; copies of the consultation document can be obtained from the HEFCE. Responses should be sent to David Pilsbury at the HEFCE, by 16 October 1998.

Summary of issues

2. The task group seeks responses to the following questions:

  1. Are sub-panels an appropriate way to address many of the concerns previously expressed about the assessment of health-related research?
  2. If so, should any of the main panels still be reconfigured?
  3. If sub-panels are not appropriate, what other specific changes should be made, and what is the rationale for the proposed (re)configuration and/or (dis)aggregation or other change?

3. The task group seeks views on:

  1. How many sub-panels are appropriate for each panel, given that too many might fragment the assessment process, while too few would fail to address the issues raised following the 1996 RAE?
  2. What is the most appropriate way of constructing sub-panels to ensure appropriate expertise is represented?

4. The task group seeks views on:

  1. Which bodies representing the users of research submitted in UOAs 1,2,3,4,5,9,10,11 should be invited to make nominations to panel membership.
  2. How to ensure that, in keeping with the approach to sub-panels generally in the RAE, user representatives play a full part in the operation of the health-related panels.

5. The task group seeks views on:

  1. Whether sub-panels should be created to advise the panel on ratings for sub-areas within a submission.
  2. Whether sub-panel scores agreed by the main panel should be made publicly available.
  3. Whether the sub-panel scores agreed by the main panel should be considered by the funding bodies in allocating funding.
  4. What might be a robust approach to attributing volume measures to sub-panels.

6. The task group seeks responses to the following:

  1. Are the proposed changes sufficient to ensure appropriate assessment of research that is directly relevant to the health service?
  2. Will the changes take account of the rapid development of many of these research areas?
  3. If not, what other approaches could be adopted that would be applicable to all UOAs?
  4. How should the panels provide feedback to institutions so that it is useful to them, but does not seek to (re)define research strategies?

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