Policy for Research Centres
University West is purposefully working to build internationally competitive research centres. The research is concentrated around areas in which University West has specific prerequisites to conduct good research and around areas of specific importance for the undergraduate education.
The Board of Governors at University West has decided that it is an objective to create what they call vital research environments. A team of researchers constitutes a vital research environment if it fulfils the following criteria:
- Several senior researchers who work together within a research theme
- A lively academic environment which encompasses both national and international exchanges, participation in research networks, seminars, research programmes and research of high quality
- A stable competence development which results in the continuing existence of an environment regardless of individuals changing tasks
- Stable financing which means that the environment has several sources of funding and can continue to exist despite of inevitable variations concerning external funding
There are today two vital research environments at University West. One is called Production Technology West. The team cooperates with the regional industry through Production Technology Centre. The other vital research environment is called Learning In and For the New Working Life, LINA, and does research on work integrated learning. In addition to this, there are several smaller research environments.
The research at the university is partly financed by funding from various research funding bodies and other external financiers, and partly by direct government funding. The latter involves money which the university can allocate as it decides. When the internal funding is allocated, vital research environments and environments on the verge of becoming vital are prioritized. One of the purposes of this has been for University West to, as soon as possible, gain the right to award doctoral degrees within specific profile areas. This was achieved in 2011 when the university was authorized to issue doctorate level degrees in the fields of Work Integrated Learning and Production Technology.