Organisation RE
Organisation Detail Research England
Reference Number IRC250617
Location Bristol See on Map
Salary £59023
Date Posted 13 August 2019
Grade UKRI-Band G
Contract Type Open Ended
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 01 September 2019
Interview Date 20 September 2019

Brief Description

Salary: £59,023 per annum
Grade: G
Contract Type: Open-Ended
Hours: Full Time / Part Time (minimum 0.8FTE)
Closing Date: 1st September 2019
Interview Date: 27th September 2019

Purpose of the role

Working with the Director of Research, you will be responsible for the strategic leadership of Research England’s portfolio of policy work aimed at ensuring an effective environment for research within English universities. You will be responsible for ensuring that Research England provides an appropriate policy framework and incentives, aligned with Research England, UKRI and Government priorities. You will:

  • provide strategic leadership and oversight to the work of the Head of Research Assessment Policy covering the Research England aspects of REF 2021 delivery, evaluation and analysis of REF 2021 and laying the foundations for the post-2021 REF
  • be responsible for the strategic direction and delivery of a range of key policy areas within Research England’s work on research environment, including liaison the UKRI Strategy team. The policy areas under your direct leadership include:
    • policy on research careers and career development, including Equality and Diversity, and support for the Concordat for Researcher Development, and support for post-graduate research students
    • policy on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, including liaison with the UKRI Shared Capability and contribution to their work programme
    • policy on Research Integrity, including issues relating to research misconduct and reproducibility
    • international research strategy (including EU exit and broader international work)
    • policy concerning Open Research (including policy development on Open Access and Open Data)
    • delivery of Research England commitments in relation to Public Engagement with Research.

The Research Directorate has a team of 7 Senior Policy Advisors and 2 Policy Advisors who are deployed flexibly across the directorate’s portfolio of work.

Reporting lines

  • Line managed by: Director of Research
  • Line manager to: Head of Research Assessment Policy, 2 Senior Policy Advisors and 1 Policy Advisor.


  • leadership and oversight of Research Assessment policy work
  • lead contact for the Concordats on Integrity, Researcher Careers and Public Engagement
  • policy lead for PGR policy work
  • policy lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • policy lead on Open Research
  • policy lead on international and EU work
  • leadership of a team of Head of Research Assessment Policy,  2 senior policy advisors and 1 policy advisor
  • contribution to the leadership and management of the Research Directorate, and to the Research England Executive.

Other key information

  • Research England will be based in Bristol until at least 2022, co-located with the Office for Students. UK Research and Innovation’s head office is in Swindon, with a further administrative office in London. You will be required to attend meetings in London and Swindon
  • with an expected target headcount of approximately 65 FTE, Research England will be the smallest Council in terms of staff, but with a budget of almost £2 billion per annum, will be the largest Council in terms of funding. Leaders in Research England will need to give careful consideration to the deployment of their time and resource in corporate activities, achieving a balance between Research England playing a full role as a Council within UK Research and Innovation, and ensuring effectiveness of its Council specific activities.  

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at UK Research and Innovation is an organisation whose purpose is to support Research and Innovation in the UK.

Research England is a new council within UK Research and Innovation, operating from April 2018. As a key component of the research funding system, Research England will oversee UK Research and Innovation’s England-only functions in relation to university research and knowledge exchange. This includes providing grant funding to English universities for research and knowledge exchange activities; developing and implementing the Research Excellence Framework in partnership with the UK Higher Education funding bodies; overseeing the sustainability of the Higher Education research base in England; overseeing the £900 million UK Research Partnership Investment Fund; and the Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF).

Shortlisting criteria


  • significant experience and leadership of policy development and implementation at a senior level
  • in depth knowledge and understanding of the UK research and higher education policy environment
  • strong written communication skills
  • experience of leading teams and line management
  • experience of gathering, analysis and presentation of evidence to inform policy decisions
  • experience of working with senior stakeholders in the research and higher education systems
  • experience of leading and delivering policy and/or funding projects, with use of appropriate tools and systems.


  • experience of leading the implementation of research funding calls
  • experience of commissioning external evaluation and evidence gathering work.


  • educated at least to undergraduate degree level of equivalent.

Interview criteria


  • in depth knowledge and understanding of the UK research and higher education policy environment
  • strong written communications skills, and persuasive and clear oral presentation skills
  • experience of leading teams and line management
  • ability to analyse complex information, and present clear summaries
  • a confident, assertive and co-operative style with an ability to deal effectively with people at all levels.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Limited parking subject to waiting list (Polaris House, Swindon only).

Employee Benefits

UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent

We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities

We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

As this job does not fulfil the Home Office Code of Practice criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK. At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK. You can check your eligibility here:

Online applications only. Please submit a covering letter and CV ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Please note that failure to address the above criteria or submitted without a covering letter may result in your application not being considered.

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