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About

Our research is designed to have impact, influence policy and practice and change lives for the better. We maximise our impact through major collaborations with external organisations ranging from public bodies to third sector to business.

Our current strategic plan for research is aimed at strengthening our academic reputation, improving our research environment, ensuring there is intellectual breadth and rigour across all our curriculum areas and also creating a focus on ‘strategic research areas’. These are currently:

Academic Excellence is one of the strategic objectives that make up the OU’s Students First: Strategy for Growth.

Our aim is to ensure OU research is externally recognised for excellence and impact, delivering substantial benefits to the University’s mission and priorities.

In the years ahead, we will use the intellectual leadership derived from our research to support even more effectively our primary purpose of creating educational opportunities and increasing social mobility.

Key facts about OU research

Our world-leading innovative research and development ranks in the top third of UK universities. It influences policy and practices from local to global levels.

  • We spend approximately £60m on research each year, generating an income of more than £30m annually
  • We host over 800 registered postgraduate students
  • We work with 18 Affiliated Research Centres, supporting research students, worldwide
  • We house over 38,000 OU research publications on our Open Research Online database
  • We ranked in the top third of UK universities in REF 2014 using the Himes Higher Education Power Score

News & articles

International Space Station - NASA

OU receives £6.7 million to expand Astrobiology Research

The Open University OU) has received £6.7 million to expand its Astrobiology Research Group to address fundamental questions about life beyond the Earth. The grant is awarded under Research England’s “Expanding Excellence in England (E3) 2019-2022”.

13th June 2019
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Upcoming Events

Jun 25

If school is the problem, what is the solution?

Tuesday, June 25, 2019 - 18:00 to 20:00

Berrill Lecture Theatre, Walton Hall, The Open University, MK7 6AA

Jul 16

The polar oceans and global climate

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 - 18:00 to 19:00

Berrill Lecture Theatre, Walton Hall, The Open University, MK7 6AA

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