University of Bristol
The University of Bristol is an international powerhouse of learning, discovery and enterprise. Its vision is of a university whose excellence is acknowledged locally, nationally and globally.
The University was rated by the Times Good University Guide 2010 as one of the top ten universities in the UK and in 2009 it was ranked within the top 27 in the world by The Times Higher Education/QS World University Rankings. The Sunday Times (September 2008) described the University of Bristol as ‘one of the jewels of British higher education’ and ‘at the cutting edge academically’. The University is a member of the Worldwide Universities Network, a grouping of 18 research-led institutions of international standing, and of the Russell Group of universities, an association of 20 major research-intensive universities of the UK.
The University of Bristol is dedicated to academic achievement across a broad range of disciplines. It is made up of more than 30 schools, organised in six faculties: Arts; Engineering; Medical and Veterinary Sciences; Medicine and Dentistry; Science; and Social Sciences and Law. It has approximately 12,000 undergraduate and 5,000 postgraduate students from around 100 countries. The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, which carried out an institutional audit of the University in 2004, awarded Bristol the highest rating available for its management of education and the academic standards of its awards. It has 31 Fellows of the Royal Society and nine of the British Academy – a remarkable achievement for a relatively compact university.
Bristol is a research-intensive university, supporting both individual scholarship and interdisciplinary or thematic research of the highest quality. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, 93% of research at Bristol was deemed to be of international standard. Over 61% of the research work assessed in 48 research fields was awarded either the top 4* rating, defined as ‘world leading’, or the 3* rating, classified as ‘internationally excellent’.
A key element of the University’s vision is to ensure that its research and education contribute to regional and national society and the economy. The University works hard to build effective links with the community and its industries, through high-quality research collaboration and productive knowledge exchange, the creation and support of new companies and enterprises, and the licensing of intellectual property.
Engaging the public is a vital part of university life and an area in which staff and students are actively involved. It is part of the University’s core business and is integral to research and teaching that is grounded in societal need and that promotes lifelong learning. It is also vital to widening participation and fair access; and for students involved in volunteering, engagement is an aspect of the distinctive ‘Bristol experience’.
Public engagement at the University of Bristol includes all the ways in which University staff and students interact with members of the public, encompassing talks, debates, festivals, performances, widening participation, research with, and driven by, communities, volunteering, lifelong learning, action research and engaged learning. Public engagement shares some of the same goals and principles as engagement with the business community; for example, in the need to be two-way, and not assume a top-down approach, and is part of a continuum with knowledge exchange.
The University is committed to operating in a sustainable manner, working constantly to reduce carbon emissions and improve the sustainability of the physical estate. Its ambitious capital programme plans to invest in the most cost-effective way in new buildings and facilities over the next few years to support research, teaching and learning. The University of Bristol is a stimulating and supportive environment for all students and staff, distinguished by a commitment to high standards, respect for the individual and a strong sense of collegiality.