Research Excellence

UCL is among the world's top universities, as reflected in performance in a range of rankings and tables.

Academic & Research Staff

UCL has thousands of academic and research staff working at the forefront of their fields of enquiry.

UCL Arts & Humanities 184
UCL Brain Sciences 1,249
UCL Built Environment 355
UCL Engineering Sciences 667

UCL Laws


UCL Life Sciences


UCL Mathematical & Physical Sciences


UCL Medical Sciences


UCL Population Health Sciences

UCL Social & Historical Sciences 621
Total  (April 2012) 5,277

Research Assessment

Independent assessment ranks UCL's research among the best in the world.

Medicine, architecture, laws, economics, computer science and philosophy are among the academic disciplines at UCL to have achieved outstanding results in the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 2008, with UCL’s total number of full-time equivalent staff rated of world-leading quality third overall in the UK after Oxford and Cambridge.

The RAE assesses the research strength of UK universities, and informs the distribution of public funds to the sector by the nation’s higher education funding bodies. UCL submitted more than 1,800 staff in 49 of the 67 Units of Assessment. In In 43 of our submissions, at least 50% of UCL's quality profile was either 4* (‘of world-leading quality’), or 3* (‘internationally excellent’). The next such exercise will be the Research Excellence Framework 2014.

The Thomson Scientific Citation Index – which catalogues journal articles and citations in the sciences, social sciences, and arts and humanities – shows that UCL is the second most-highly cited European university and 15th in the world. It is also the UK university most-cited by health researchers.

Research Funding

Competitively won research grants and contracts account for more than a third of UCL’s income.

Income – 2011/2012

Research grants and contracts  £300.7m
Academic fees and support grants  £208.5m
Funding council grants  £198.3m
Other operating income  £156.8m
Endowment income and interest receivable
Total  £871.2m

We have enjoyed exceptional success in competitive bidding for funds from the government’s Joint Infrastructure Fund, the Science Research Investment Fund and the Capital Investment Fund. In total, these funds will have enabled us to invest more than £360 million in state-of-the-art infrastructure, facilitating cutting-edge research across a broad range of disciplines.

Nobel Laureates & Scholarship

There has been at least one Nobel Laureate who is or was a student or academic at UCL every decade since the establishment of the Nobel Prizes in 1901.

The 29 UCL Nobel Laureates (as befits London’s Global University, more than half were born outside England, including in Belgium, Brazil, China, the Czech Republic, Germany, India, Scotland and the USA):

A further 11 UCL Honorary Graduates or Honorary Fellows have been awarded Nobel Prizes:

Our current academic community includes 33 Fellows of the Royal Society, 28 Fellows of the British Academy, 11 Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering and 81 Fellows of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

UCL Library Services hosts an online exhibition about nine of the university’s Fellows of the Royal Society.

UCL Provost's Venture Research Fellowship

This novel scheme supports researchers whose ideas have transformational potential.

Read more about the UCL Provost's Venture Research Fellowship.

Page last modified on 14 oct 10 15:45

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