Research Centres

In order to be granted Centre status, a formal application must be approved by the University. Once approved, formal reporting measures will apply. 

What is a Research Centre?

A Research Centre has as its mission the development of a competitive portfolio of research and the establishment of an international reputation for leadership in the chosen theme. Leadership will be evidenced, for example, by the volume of high quality publications the Centre produces, a growing volume of income generated from external sources, its output of trained, employable people at Doctoral and Postdoctoral level, the esteem of its academic staff and the impact of its outputs on academic and non-academic stakeholders.

Centres may cross School, Institute and/or College boundaries. They may also form partnerships with external organisations, in which case specially negotiated constitutional arrangements may apply. In all cases, Centres will have a designated lead / home School or Institute.

Centres create an identity and, where appropriate, a shared environment for specialist thematic, normally multi-disciplinary, research that brings together academic staff and postgraduate students working together on common interests.

Each Centre will be led by a Director, normally appointed competitively from among the existing staff complement of the University and, in the case of externally funded Centres, in consultation with the funding agency.

A Centre will not be established if its anticipated lifetime is less than 5 years. However, a Centre that is not delivering its mission may be closed prematurely. Centres will undergo annual review up to Year 5, followed by five-yearly reviews thereafter. The reviews will be led by College and University Senior Management to assess past performance and the future strategy of the Centre. For Centres funded by external agencies, such reviewing might be based on regular external reviews organised by those agencies.

More information on Research Centres can be found in the Constitution of Research Centres.

Formally approved Centres will be featured on a highly-visible, externally-facing University webpage (available shortly).

How to apply

An application form, available below, must be completed and submitted to R&I by the Head of College or College Office as evidence of College approval and support.

Applications will be initially reviewed by the co-convenors of the Research Planning and Strategy Committee (RPSC). If further discussion is required, the application will be taken to the next meeting of RPSC (dates and information on RPSC can be found here). If concerns are raised at any stage, the application will be taken to Senior Management Group (SMG) for approval.

A decision will be communicated to applicants within four weeks of submission.

The application should be submitted to with the subject line CENTRE APPLICATION.

Applications are to be made using the Research Centre Application Form (Word document).

How to report

Centres are expected to report on progress annually, using the proforma available below, for the first five years. Annual reports are due at the start of each financial year (which runs from 1 August to 31 July). The first report will be due in August regardless of the centre’s starting date, providing the centre commenced no less than three months prior to August. In this instance, the first report will be due the following August.

Once centres are in their fifth year, reports will be due every five years or as required by the funder.

Reports will be reviewed by R&I and the relevant College(s). If issues arise, these will be taken to RPSC for discussion. Details on RPSC, including meeting dates, can be found here.

Reports should be submitted to with the subject line CENTRE REPORTING.

Reports are to be submitted using the Research Centre Annual Report Form (Word document).

Web presence

Formally-approved Centres are required to have a web presence. Please contact the Web Team if you have any queries regarding the set up or maintenance of your webpages. The Web Team is also able to assist with the review and revision of existing webpages.

Once the Centre’s webpages are online, please notify R&I.

Centres at the University of Glasgow

The University of Glasgow has over 50 research centres active in a wide range of areas. A full list of centres can be found here.


Please contact with any queries.