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SMD Strategy

Research

To achieve the highest standards in research, integrating multi-disciplinary and translational approaches to address health related problems of local and global importance.

During the next five years, we will continue collaborative work across disciplines, Faculties and Institutions. We will have a major role in the QMUL Life Sciences Initiative (LSI). This will address important clinical questions through increased understanding of normal and disease processes. We will circumvent the barriers that prevent effective answers to these clinical questions. The choice of these questions will be driven (in part) by clinicians and clinical academics in the NHS, capitalising on the strengths of QMUL and Barts Health NHS Trust (BHT). A two-way flow of information between basic and applied research will deliver innovation in the therapeutic management of complex diseases.

While nurturing activities in partnership with BHT, the East London NHS Foundation Trust and UCLP, we will actively seek new partnerships with national and international institutions in areas complementary to our existing portfolio of research.

We will seek to enhance our capability in population and global health; primary and community care; and health services research and innovation while augmenting - and when possible aligning it with - our existing excellence in basic and applied healthcare sciences.

Key areas of strategic importance for our research over the next five years will be:

Discovery Biomedical Sciences

We will enhance discovery through the implementation of precision medicine research with an emphasis on population scale initiatives. Building on our leadership in genomics medicine, and developing functional genomics and post-genomic approaches, we will identify complementary know-how in specific areas of basic and applied research to augment the volume of our outputs.

Clinical Trials and Translation

We will enhance the School’s clinical trials capability and develop a joint strategy with our NHS partners for clinical trials. Translation of basic science into patient benefit will draw expertise from other Faculties and expand discovery in devices and bioengineering.

Population Health Sciences including Applied Health Research

The local population, with its diverse ethnic profile and relationship with QMUL and the NHS, represents a significant strength. We will nurture existing links with the local community and draw together aspects of local and global health education, training and research to create an internationally recognised programme in Population Health of global relevance and impact. We will increase our links with primary care, expanding our portfolio of applied research, ensuring translation of basic science discoveries into health solutions.

Building external collaborations and partnerships to leverage income and resource

We will harness new opportunities from our existing partnerships and will seek to forge new ones. Working with partners, we will pursue opportunities with the private sector, including strategic alliances with major pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies and SMEs (Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises). Commercialisation of our inventions will help ensure our basic and applied research makes an impact.

Objectives

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2.1 Enhance the Faculty position as a leading broad-based biomedical research institution, thus enhancing the QMUL position as a leading research University

Indicator of ProgressTarget

QMUL place in rankings of world Faculties

Grant success rates for major funding bodies

Number of independently funded senior and intermediate research fellows across the career path

Maintain our current high standard to support the QMUL aspiration to be in the top 75 in QS and Times Higher Education Rankings by 18/19

Overall success rate to surpass the London Institutions average

At least 10% increase in Research Council funding over the planning period

20% increase in EU funding over the planning period (assuming that Britain remains in the EEC)

Increase year on year through to 2018/19

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2.2 To support our academic staff to achieve nationally and internationally-recognised excellent research quality

Indicator of ProgressTarget

Number of academics receiving honours and accolades/awards from national academies and other national and international bodies

Year on year increase across the strategy period

Year on year increase in number of 4* publications per year

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2.3 Continue to recruit and support Early Career Researchers

Indicator of ProgressTarget

Award of competitive grants

Promotion to university-funded posts

Year on year increase during the strategy period
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2.4 Educate to PhD level an increasing number of students, derived both from the UK and overseas

Indicator of ProgressTarget

An increase in the number of PhD students

An increase in timely PhD submissions

20% increase in the number of PhD students by 2019

90% submission rate within four years

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2.5 To position ourselves as one of the leading Centres for Clinical Research/Industry-sponsored clinical trials in medicine and dentistry in London, and then nationally

Indicator of ProgressTarget

To expand clinical trials activities as well as Experimental Medicine programmes.

To expand facilities for clinical research work

20% increase in both commercial and investigator lead trials

One new facility opened during the strategy period

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2.6 To increase collaborative research with industry

Indicator of ProgressTarget
Increased income arising from collaborative research20% increase in total value of collaborative research contracts
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1.7 Sustain an environment in which academic engagement in innovation is encouraged, supported and rewarded in order to maximise translation of research outputs into patient benefits

Indicator of ProgressTarget

Number of Invention Disclosures made by SMD to Queen Mary Innovation Ltd

Number of and income generated through licensing agreements

Year on year increase during the planning period

Year on year increase during the planning period

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1.8 To create new multidisciplinary centres for research and education

Indicator of ProgressTarget
Development of externally-funded centres in order to provide core external funding to cover key research infrastructure costsTwo new centres opened over the planning period