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The copyright in the text and layout of the pages of the REF website is held either by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) or by the originating authors.


The copyright and database right in the materials, data, reports and publications available for download or viewing from the REF website are held by the organisation named as the copyright or database right owner in or on such publication – this will often be UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) but, exceptionally, it may evidently be different originating authors or publishers. REF Impact case studies are owned by the higher education institution that has submitted the case study.  Unless otherwise stated here, or in the publication itself, the copyright or database right owner is UKRI.


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Use of REF submission information – CC BY 4.0 licence and permitted use


All REF submissions information, including downloadable submissions data, REF impact case studies, institution environment statements and unit environment statements can be used under the CC BY 4.0 licence. Use is permitted under these licence conditions:


A more user friendly version is available here but does not replace the full legal code:


The ‘Attribution’ element of the CC-BY licence requires users to give appropriate credit, provide a link to the licence, and indicate if changes are made. This means that HEIs will be appropriately credited where case studies are used. This may be done in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses the user or the use of material.


Use of other material


Unless otherwise stated, the text of the pages of the REF website and the text of REF-branded publications and reports may, save in relation to elements credited to third parties, be copied or reproduced provided that the source is acknowledged, the text is not altered  and it is not used, wholly or in part, for commercial gain. Use for commercial gain requires the prior written permission of the copyright holders.


Should you wish to re-use information which is owned by UKRI then you may be able to do so in accordance with the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2015. Please submit your request in writing, provide your name and an address for correspondence, specify the document and/or information requested and state the purpose for which, and how, the information is to be re-used. Requests about material published on should be sent to


Should you wish to re-use information which is owned by a third party please contact the third party for permission.

If you ask us for information and are not satisfied with our response, you have the right to appeal against our decision.