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62% increase in AUT researchers

30 April 2019


Results of the government’s research quality assessment, the Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) show a 62% increase in the number of active academics with funded research portfolios at Auckland University of Technology (AUT).

This is bolstered by a 150% increase in Category A academics - those who deliver the country’s best quality research. The number of Category A researchers at AUT has risen from 20 in 2012 to 50 in 2018.

“We are also pleased to have 133 new and emerging researchers at AUT – an increase of 32%,” said Vice-Chancellor Derek McCormack.

“As New Zealand’s youngest university, growing our research expertise in areas with a direct benefit to our country and the world is a priority. I am grateful to our academics who have worked hard over the last six years to improve AUT’s contribution and standing.”

The results reflect the university’s culture of being open minded, curious and collaborative and follow AUT’s position in the recent Times Higher Education rankings as the top university in New Zealand for global research impact.

This research combines with innovative teaching and a combination of theoretical and practical learning resulting in 96% of available graduates in paid employment within six months of graduation.

Key facts:

- Category A researchers at AUT increased by 150% to 50.

- 729 active academics with funded research portfolios (up 62%)

- Business and Economics (133), Health (101) and Social Sciences (94) are the AUT research areas with the greatest number of funded researchers.

- AUT academics funded in the Engineering, Technology and Architecture area increased from 26 in 2012 to 69 in 2018.

- AUT academics funded in the Māori Knowledge and Development area increased from 8 in 2012 to 17 in 2018.


The Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) is an assessment of the quality of research carried out by New Zealand tertiary organisations by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC).

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