Skip to main content

Queen Mary performs strongly in latest Knowledge Exchange Framework

Queen Mary remains a strong performer in this year’s Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) – published 27 September - across a range of different areas.

Published on:

For the second year running, Queen Mary was placed in the top category – Very High Engagement - for ‘Research partnerships’, ‘Public and Community Engagement’, and ‘IP and Commercialisation’. The University also ranked in the second highest category for ‘Working with the Public and Third Sector’.

Further information, including case studies, across each category measured are available on our dedicated KEF webpage.

Queen Mary’s performance reflects its commitment to and strength in sharing knowledge, ideas and experience to benefit both the economy and society. The results also reflect Queen Mary’s longstanding strengths, such as its excellence in public engagement, along with its ambition to be the most inclusive research-intensive University in the world.

This strength in public and civic engagement has been integral to the University's continued knowledge exchange success. Queen Mary's Civic University Agreement (CUA) formalises our commitment to maximising our place-based impact in East London. The University is also a founding member of the Civic University Network – which brings universities across the UK together to share best practice.

Queen Mary’s Research Highways illustrate some of the most exciting knowledge exchange projects happening across the University and how it works with a variety of partners to deliver impact.

Professor Colin Bailey, Queen Mary’s President and Principal, said: “We are proud of our results in this year’s Knowledge Exchange Framework and the recognition of the ways we make the world a better place. We are especially pleased with maintaining our place among the very best universities in the country when it comes to how we engage with the public and our community, our innovation, and our research partnerships.

“Our results are testament to the hard work of both our University staff and all those we partner with. I would like to thank everyone involved and we look to build on this success.”

Dr Philippa Lloyd, Queen Mary’s Vice-Principal for Policy and Strategic Partnerships, said: “We are dedicated to using our expertise in research and innovation to tackle society’s biggest challenges, which cannot happen without knowledge exchange, collaboration and partnership.

“Our investment to grow our research capacity fuels growth in opportunities for Knowledge Exchange, which enables us to change people’s lives for the better.”

‘Knowledge exchange’ refers to the wide range of activities universities undertake with partners – for example businesses, charities and community groups – for the benefit of the economy and society.

The Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) is the system for assessing the quality of knowledge exchange in UK higher education institutions.

The following provides some examples of Queen Mary’s work in the areas of commercialisation and engagement. For more information, visit our dedicated KEF pages.


There have been notable successes for Queen Mary spinouts – companies which have evolved from Queen Mary research and have a positive social and economic impact on the world.

DragonflyAI, a visual analytics platform developed at Queen Mary, uses artificial intelligence informed by cutting edge neuroscience to accurately predict what consumers see first when they look at content. It is the result of close collaboration between researchers at Queen Mary, business partners, and entrepreneurs. Its clients include some of the biggest leading consumer brands including Harrod’s, GSK, Mitsubishi, Mars and Jaguar Landrover.

The Queen Mary Investment Fund provides funding to commercialise research out of the University developing weight-loss products aimed at tackling obesity. Enterika Ltd is helping to do this through a pill that promotes weight loss by reducing appetite.

Public and community engagement

A key aspect of Queen Mary’s strong performance in the KEF has been its continued success in public and community engagement. Queen Mary was the first university to receive the Gold Engage Watermark (in 2016) and then the Platinum Engage Watermark (in 2021) from the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement. A hallmark of Queen Mary’s sector-leading work in this area is its annual Festival of Communities, which showcases some of Queen Mary’s leading research and each year attracts thousands of people from different East End communities.

In 2022, medical students at Queen Mary launched a public health campaign to educate teenagers on the neurological risks of using nitrous oxide. The campaign group helps teenagers through interactive sessions, social media and developing further research into the drug.

Business engagement

Working with business has led to multiple exciting knowledge exchange projects on matters of global significance. This includes Genes & Health, which is changing lives in the South Asian community and helping fight against heart disease, diabetes, poor health, and other major diseases.

Other examples include work on an ambitious project to find a suitable replacement for indium - a rare and highly expensive metal used in electronics, and developing new heating solutions.

Back to top