Research at Lincoln

Research with Impact

Through our research, we are striving to change society for the better. Working with regional, national, and international partners, our academics are engaged in groundbreaking studies that are challenging the status quo and making a tangible difference to the world around us.

Results from the most recent national Research Excellence Framework (REF) have revealed that more than three quarters (79%) of Lincoln’s research was judged to be internationally excellent or world-leading (three and four star). We have seen an improvement in our overall quality scores, with the strongest advancements made in ratings for the impact our research has on society. We have also achieved significant improvement across the board in our 'research power', which is a key measure of the influence of our research in the UK, growing our share of overall sector research power by nearly 50 per cent.

The University achieved a number of notable successes in its REF submissions, including:

History, where 65 per cent of our research publications were rated world-leading (four star) – placing us first in the UK for the ratio of four-star outputs out of 80 institutions submitting in this Unit of Assessment;

Social Policy, where 53 per cent of our research publications were rated world-leading (four star) – placing us third in the UK for the ratio of four-star outputs out of 76 institutions submitting in this Unit of Assessment;

Computer Science, where 87 per cent of our research impact was rated world-leading (four star) – placing us ninth in the UK for the ratio of four-star impact out of 90 institutions submitting in this Unit of Assessment;

Allied Health ProfessionsHistory, and Psychology, in each of which 67 per cent of our impact was rated as world-leading (four star);

Chemistry, where in its first submission at Lincoln, 39 per cent of the research publications were rated as world-leading (four star);

- In Business our research power has more than trebled.

The results from the latest REF, which is a system for measuring research excellence in higher education institutions in the UK, demonstrate the depth and breadth of research now embedded in academic disciplines across the University of Lincoln, consolidating our reputation nationally and internationally for the quality, value, and diversity of the research we undertake. 

Our Research Themes

The University's research themes represent both our current strengths and future areas of opportunity. They embody a unique set of areas that key into our goals as a civic university undertaking internationally significant research with local relevance, but also with our aspiration to become both thought leaders and researchers engaged in the pursuit of excellence.

While the themes capture our areas of research excellence and most of our research in general, there are also a set of methodologies and values that we apply to our research activities. These cross-cutting strands include: the co-creation of knowledge with stakeholders locally, nationally and internationally, and with our students; interdisciplinarity to answer the important questions of our age; creativity in research to develop new paths and solutions; and the concept of the 21st century lab to use our local environment and communities as our test-bed for research into global problems.

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Impacting Global Goals Through Research

As a University created by its community for its community to reduce inequalities, we understand the vital role education and scholarship play in ensuring that in our rapidly-changing world, no one is left behind. 

We support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which are an urgent call for action to tackle some of the world's most pressing problems, framing our research and collaborations in ways that can contribute to delivering peace and prosperity for people and planet.


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Research Institutes, Centres and Groups

Whether exploring global health challenges or technological advancements for agriculture, our research institutes, centres, and groups are hubs for pioneering new studies which bring together expertise from across the University to produce research that is changing the world.

Industry Links

The University of Lincoln is recognised as setting a blueprint for excellence in our pioneering approach to working with industry. Our unique relationships with companies such as Siemens Energy and the Lincolnshire Co-op demonstrate our innovative industry-engaged approach, which has been acknowledged through a series of national awards over the past decade.

We have built a reputation for understanding and responding to the needs of business, forging strong industry links to address specific skills gaps and real-world commercial challenges.

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Research Environment

At the University of Lincoln, we understand the importance of providing staff and students with the best possible environment for pursuing research that can support our communities, improve lives, and change the world.

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The Lincoln Policy Hub

The Lincoln Policy Hub brings together the latest insights, evidence, and commentary from researchers at the University of Lincoln, in a one-stop-shop for both academics and policymakers. The Hub features blogs, policy briefs, and policy guidance from our researchers, who work closely with government, parliamentarians, and civil society, placing evidence and academic rigour at the heart of policymaking.

By connecting politicians, decision makers, and practitioners with our research, we are helping to deliver evidence-based policies that meet the challenges facing our society today.

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Research Case Studies

At Lincoln, we believe our research should contribute to solving real-world problems. Examples of the impact of our research are showcased in our recent submission to the Research Excellence Framework 2021, covering 22 different subject areas and spanning many aspects of society, culture, the environment, the economy, and beyond.

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Supporting the Career Development of Researchers

The University of Lincoln has been successful in gaining the European Commission HR Excellence in Research Award. The University fully supports the principles of HR Excellence in Research and the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers. Our commitment to the development of researchers is to create a supportive culture and environment that encourages creativity, interaction, and collaboration.

The Concordat is an agreement between funders and employers of research staff to improve the employment and support for research careers in UK higher education and benefits the whole community. The Concordat sets out clear standards that research staff can expect from the institution that employs them, as well as their responsibilities as researchers. 

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Lincoln International Institute for Rural Health

Lincoln International Institute for Rural Health (LIIRH) conducts interdisciplinary research to address the most important health issues facing rural communities locally, nationally, and internationally. It aims to shine a light on the unacceptable health inequities that exist across the rural-urban divide and find innovative ways of reducing or eliminating that inequality.

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Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology

The Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology (LIAT) is a specialist research institute that aims to support and enhance productivity, efficiency, and sustainability in food and farming.

Researchers are engaged in the development of technologies which add value or solve challenges across the food chain. One of the Institute’s core aims is to connect academic expertise with partners in industry to pursue world class research and address real-world challenges, advancing state-of-the-art agri-food technology and improving the bottom line for businesses.

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21st Century Lab

The 21st Century is creating profound changes and universities have a significant role to play to shore up societal certainty against a backdrop of significant upheaval.

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Research Studentships

At the University of Lincoln, postgraduate students are an integral part of our research community. They work alongside talented academics and researchers from around the world, contributing to our growing reputation for internationally excellent research.

There are opportunities to get involved in exciting research projects by applying for a studentship. The University offers a range of studentships including funded and part-funded opportunities, please refer to the current studentships information below. 

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Public Engagement

The University is dedicated to public engagement, sharing the benefits and providing opportunities to get involved in our work.

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Support Our Research

Our academic teams are involved in research at the leading edge of their disciplines. It is vital that we support those who are learning, teaching, and researching by ensuring they have the opportunities, facilities, and resources to reach their full potential.

Your gift today could mean a world-changing discovery tomorrow.

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Research News

The latest news stories about the research we're doing at the University of Lincoln.