Following last month's news item on knowledge exchange (KE) benchmarking, a new tool has been released by HEFCE as part of a comprehensive package of support to keep English university KE operating at a world class standard.
They have set up a knowledge exchange framework portal (www.hefce.ac.uk/kess/KEportal) which builds on the recent reports written by Research Consulting and IP Pragmatics, and brings together communities of practice and their good practice materials. Further resources and links will be added to this portal as the KE framework develops.
These resources include an excel spreadsheet which allows higher education institutions to benchmark their KE performance against their peers. The tool is a pivot table containing selected financial indicators derived from the HE-BCI survey, along with some key normalisation figures. This allows a university to select a relevant cluster of similar organisations (based on similar mission, or geography, or similar research intensity, or to select a custom group), and compare their performance with the rest of the group. This can be adjusted to account for the underlying capacity of the organisations (by expressing the result by number of academic staff). A range of indicators are included, to allow a range of KE measures to be compared. HEIs are also encouraged to use a variety of techniques including both quantitative and qualitative approaches towards benchmarking to improve their operational performance and set strategic goals.