Business and Community Interaction survey

The Higher Education – Business and Community Interaction (HE-BCI) survey collects financial and output data related to knowledge exchange each academic year and has been running since 1999.

The annual survey reports provide information on various activities, from business and public or third sector involvement in research to consultancy and the commercialisation of intellectual property. It also explores other activities intended to have direct societal benefits, such as continuing professional development and continuing education courses and providing lectures, exhibitions and other cultural activities.

Some of the data in the HE-BCI return is combined with data from elsewhere to determine the University’s HEIF allocation.

In late 2017 the Government announced a new Framework similar to REF and TEF – the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF). In 2019 a series of workshops and consultations were undertaken to allow HEIs to participate in the development of the KEF. In January 2020, the details of the first iteration of the KEF were published. This survey covered the academic year 2019/20 and uses many of the metrics already captured within the HE-BCI survey.

Knowledge Exchange Framework 2

In September 2022, the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF2) released its findings using slightly different metrics to the first iteration of KEF and data from 2018 to 2021. Following analysis by Lancaster University, it was found the institution ranked joint fourth in England when assessed across the seven measured perspectives.

The Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) measures the quality of knowledge exchange activity across the higher education sector. It captures how institutions utilise their academic activity outside their walls to benefit society. This table, compiled by Lancaster University data analysts, shows how institutions rank by overall points score and where they sit within their assigned cluster of organisations with similar attributes.

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