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Transforming knowledge into action

Our commitment to research that will benefit our global society

The Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) is used by the Government to assess universities’ ability to translate knowledge, i.e. ‘knowledge exchange’.

KEF sits alongside the Research Excellence Framework (REF), which assesses the ability to generate knowledge, and the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), which assesses the ability to transmit knowledge.

KEF recognises the breadth and variation of knowledge exchange (KE) across different institutions. It isn’t a league table.

KEF shows knowledge exchange performance across seven ‘Perspectives’:

  1. Research partnerships

  2. Working with businesses

  3. Working with the public and third sectors

  4. Skills, enterprise and entrepreneurship

  5. Local growth and regeneration

  6. Intellectual property (IP) and commercialisation

  7. Public and community engagement.

It also seeks to ensure a fair comparison with similar universities. It groups institutions into ‘clusters’ and uses data on KE and innovation from the annual Higher Education Business-Community Interaction (HE-BCI) return to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

The University of Portsmouth is in the biggest cluster – Cluster E – with 28 other modern universities including Coventry, Plymouth and Westminster.


KEF results

The comparison, compiled by Research England, shows that we are in the top 50% of our cluster for every Perspective. We’re also in the top 40% for our research partnerships and our IP and commercialisation, and the top 30% for our skills, enterprise and entrepreneurship.

These results demonstrate that we are a modern, entrepreneurial university, focused on collaboration with local and national partners and on applying our research to day-to-day life.

You can see the full KEF results on the KEF website.

University of Portsmouth KEF results

KEF Perspective Cluster position
Research partnerships Top 40%
Working with business Top 50%
Working with the public and third sectors Top 50%
Skills, enterprise and entrepreneurship Top 30%
Local growth and regeneration Top 50%
IP and commercialisation Top 50%
Public and community engagement Top 50%


KEF case studies

The links in the table below will take you through to a detailed description of the individual Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) 2020 case study.

Student satisfaction

Our students come first. Find out how we show our commitment to honouring the student voice around factors such as the quality of teaching, support and personal development.

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Research Excellence Framework results 2021

We are ranked third of all modern post-92 universities in the UK for research power in REF 2021. Take a closer look at our work in sixteen Research Excellence Framework Units of Assessment.

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