School of Divinity maintains No.1 position in Scotland for research power

School of Divinity maintains No.1 position in Scotland for the quality and breadth of our research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework Results (REF)

The School of Divinity is delighted to have maintained its No.1 position in Scotland for the quality and breadth of our research according to the REF 2021 results.  The REF, conducted once every seven years, is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK Higher Education Institutions.  In the 2021 results the School of Divinity saw significant advances in all three assessed areas - outputs (books and articles produced by staff in the School), research environment, and impact. We doubled our 4* (world leading) performance for research outputs, and have been ranked 5th in the UK for the quality and breadth of our research by the Times Higher Education (THE).

The University of Edinburgh as a whole maintained its position as 1st in Scotland and 4th in the UK for the quality and breadth of its research (in the THE rankings),  with nearly 90 per cent of its research activity classed as internationally excellent and world leading. 

Beyond the numbers what the REF highlights is the impact that our work and research have on our community and wider society, that is the tangible change the research brings and the public value it delivers. As Professor Helen Bond, our Head of School explains;

“Our strong REF result reflects our diverse and collaborative research community, with its numerous postgraduate students, wide-ranging seminars, innovative research centres and networks, and growing numbers of early career researchers”

Review of Sharia Law and the Public Understanding of Islam in the UK  

Mona Siddiqui
Professor Mona Siddiqui

With her unique profile as a Muslim female theologian and highly respected public intellectual, Mona Siddiqui has reached a wide international audience through her work on Islamic thought, law, and ethics.   

Tackling life’s big questions head on

Helen Bond St Pauls
Professor Helen Bond, Head of the School of Divinity

Uncovering the Historical Jesus

Helen Bond’s research has re-positioned Jesus within his political, social and archaeological context while also shedding light on the crucial role women played within the early church. Her research has generated, influenced, and informed major television documentaries and radio programmes, reaching audiences worldwide.

Revisiting the crucifixion 

Reshaping the Understanding of John Knox

Jane Dawson’s highly acclaimed biography of John Knox and his role in the British and European Reformations has quickly become established as the leading point of reference on Knox. Informing documentary films, novels, theatrical plays, a children’s book, TV and radio programmes, her work has dispelled popular myths about Knox and the Protestant Reformation, shifting public understanding of his place in Scottish history and national identity.

Review of John Knox Biography