HEFCE recently announced details of the roles and recruitment of the expert panels for the Research Excellence Framework 2021, inviting nominations from nominating bodies.

The FWSA is a nominating body for REF 2021 and we intend to nominate panel members. We welcome members interested in being nominated to get in touch with the information below. Further details of HEFCE’s process and requirements can be found at the end of this post, and potential nominees should familiarise themselves with these details before proceeding. There is no limit to the number of nominations that each nominating body can make, and we hope to support as many nominees as possible.

We will support nominations following an internal assessment by our Executive Committee. Nominations will be assessed against the HEFCE criteria, and following the REF 2021 guidelines for Equality and Diversity in the nominations process (see below); to this end, we particularly encourage nominees from previously under-represented groups, including women, people from black and ethnic minority backgrounds, and people with disabilities.

For consideration for FWSA nomination, please send:

  • a completed FWSA REF panel nominee information form;
  • a 2-page CV;
  • A statement of no more than 1 page A4, with the following information where applicable:
    • current role and other recent posts of relevance.
    • Evidence of conducting leading research in your field (for example, key academic appointments or achievements).
    • Other indicators of standing in the academic community (for example, editorial posts or chair positions for subject bodies) or their professional community.
    • Relevant experience of research management or commissioning, using or benefitting from research.
    • Relevant experience of leading, managing or practising interdisciplinary research.
    • Relevant experience of peer review, research quality standards, or of evaluating the impact, benefits or quality of research.

The FWSA internal deadline for nominations is 4th December 2017; we will inform you as soon as possible if your nomination will be taken forward.

Please send the above information to and do get in touch with any questions you have.

Further information

Further information on the panel structure, the roles, responsibilities and workload of panel members and the criteria for appointment can be found in the publication ‘Roles and recruitment of expert panels’ (REF 2017/03).

Individuals who are nominated need to confirm that they are willing and able to serve as a panel member, and should be aware of the provisional timetable and workload implications: see the Roles and Recruitment information for further details. A guide for research users taking part in the REF is available at:

The funding bodies are seeking to increase the representativeness of panel members, and invite nominations of candidates from a diverse range of backgrounds, institution types and geographical region. We particularly welcome nominations of candidates from groups previously under-represented on assessment panels, including women, people from black and ethnic minority backgrounds, and disabled people. The FWSA will be following the REF guidelines for Equality and Diversity, including providing information about how equality and diversity issues were taken into account in putting forward nominations. More information is available here.

Nominations are welcomed from individuals who have served previously on REF or Research Assessment Exercise panels, as well as those for whom this would be a new experience. Heads of HEIs may not be nominated as panel members.

Further information about the REF is available at