REF 2029 policy roadmap

In our guidance for REF 2029 we will form a policy framework on: 

  • how to submit to the exercise  
  • how submissions will be assessed 
  • how submissions will be audited 

In the guidance we will outline the policies that enable REF 2029 to be delivered transparently, consistently, and rigorously, maintaining the key principles and purposes of the exercise. 

Policy development

The REF team have been working on the best way to publish policy for REF 2029 and we have developed a new approach. We want to support the sector to plan for the exercise and to encourage engagement with the development process. 

For REF 2029 we want to simplify the guidance and make it more accessible for everyone. We will do this by: 

  • taking a modular approach to policy publication  
  • reviewing the format of the guidance, moving away from very large policy documents to web-based, structured, interlinked guidance 
  • simplifying terminology and removing barriers to those who are new to the process 

As we develop policy we will: 

  • seek to balance the priorities of the exercise, using principles to analyse policy options and their impacts 
  • centre on diverse engagement and use policy development techniques that harness stakeholder perspectives to scope and analyse policy options and their impacts    
  • consider the evidence base 
  • be holistic, balancing policy decisions and impacts across the whole policy framework. 

How to get involved 

If you are interested in participating in REF 2029 policy development, please visit our Get involved page to view current opportunities. Please also email us at if you have any suggestions about how we can improve our guidance for you.  

Policy roadmap 

For REF 2029 we’re going to publish policy in a modular way. Rather than publishing one large policy document, we’re going to release policy modules when we develop them. We will publish any new information on the REF website and we will develop consistent methods to let you know about any updates, such as mailing lists for REF and Jisc mail.   

Our updated timetable shows you when to expect new releases of policy.  

Please contact if you have any questions using the subject ‘REF policy spring release’.