Edinburgh Napier’s culture of innovation, collaboration and integrity helps researchers to fulfil their aspirations. In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 assessment of every UK university, over two-thirds of all our Edinburgh Napier University research was judged to be either ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ – and we know this doesn’t happen by chance.

Our inclusive policies, guidance and training offer strong support to our people at all stages of their career, and we actively encourage cooperation, mutual respect and a culture of wellbeing across the university.

Our research themes provide a framework for cross-university activity and interdisciplinary research. Through them, effective communities of staff and students are encouraged to work together on suitable collaborative funding proposals, as well as finding opportunities to enhance the curriculum. The university supports these themes with a central fund, enabling academics to devote time to interdisciplinary activity, and outcomes are promoted externally.

Research themes
Our research centres

Our Research Centres bring together academic staff, students and our external partner organisations in a united mission to solve real-world problems, influence policy, and deliver positive impact on a local, national and global scale.

Development and support for our researchers

We provide well-defined progression pathways for academic staff that recognise and value individual achievement and contribution, and reward active leadership and capacity building. We encourage our research staff to set goals and identify opportunities for growth; and we offer funding every year for researcher-driven initiatives that support those opportunities. We are very supportive of Early Career Researchers, and committed to their development.

Our Researcher Development programme is open to both research students and research staff, an approach that fosters an inclusive culture where research students feel part of the wider community. We are in the top quartile of UK universities for Professional Development of our students, as shown by our 2019 PRES data; and we support early career researchers with our annual internal research funding competition, which mirrors external applications processes to help them gain valuable experience and feedback.

Open, supportive research culture

Key to our strategy is an open research culture supported by an effective research management and support system. Regular training is offered across campuses to foster awareness of practices and policies.

We are proud holders of the EU HR Excellence in Research award, and a signatory to the UK Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers, meaning we are committed to regular reporting and review of our practices, with the aim of enhancing our researchers’ career progression.

We are also actively part of several external research networks and collaborative partnerships, including the Built Environment – Smarter Transformation and the Scottish Institute for Policing Research; and we host and work with EQUATE Scotland to enable women in science, engineering, technology and the built environment to progress into a career of their chosen discipline.

Research by School

Within Edinburgh Napier, our research spans the full range of academic subjects and vocational fields covered by the university. An overview of current school research as well as specific research groups and projects can be found in each of the University’s five schools: