The Australian Research Quality Framework: A live experiment in capturing the social, economic, environmental, and cultural returns of publicly funded research
Article first published online: 28 MAY 2008
Copyright © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
New Directions for Evaluation
Special Issue: Reforming the Evaluation of Research
Volume 2008, Issue 118, pages 47–60, Summer 2008
How to Cite
Donovan, C. (2008), The Australian Research Quality Framework: A live experiment in capturing the social, economic, environmental, and cultural returns of publicly funded research. New Directions for Evaluation, 2008: 47–60. doi: 10.1002/ev.260
- Issue published online: 28 MAY 2008
- Article first published online: 28 MAY 2008
The author regards development of Australia's ill-fated Research Quality Framework (RQF) as a “live experiment” in determining the most appropriate approach to evaluating the extra-academic returns, or “impact,” of a nation's publicly funded research. The RQF was at the forefront of an international movement toward richer qualitative, contextual approaches that aimed to gauge the wider economic, social, environmental, and cultural benefits of research. Its construction and implementation sent mixed messages and created confusion about what impact is, and how it is best measured, to the extent that this bold live experiment did not come to fruition. © Wiley Periodicals, Inc.