Programmatic review terms of reference

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) runs a managed programme of activities including grant-funded research, STFC-run facilities and departments, and international subscriptions.

To enable the UK to remain at the forefront of the science that STFC supports, it is necessary to regularly consider the quality, effectiveness, and impact of STFC’s programmes. This is necessary to ensure that funded activities continue to meet the council’s strategy and that there is capacity and flexibility to take advantage of strategically important future opportunities.

Read the programmatic review.

Purpose and aims

  1. Assess the quality of STFC’s programmes in terms of science, operational effectiveness, and impact.
  2. Inform STFC’s future strategic and financial planning.
  3. Define appropriate research areas and recommend a research portfolio and planning timeline for STFC support to those research areas.


  1. Define research areas that are consistent with STFC’s strategic aims.
  2. Evaluate whether each of STFC’s current programmes is well-matched to the Council’s strategy.
  3. Evaluate the recent, current and likely future scientific excellence, operational effectiveness and impact of the scientific aspects of each of STFC’s programmes.
  4. Identify any aspects of STFC’s programmes that are less well-matched to the Council’s strategy, and make recommendations concerning the future of these activities.
  5. Consider future programme opportunities and, if appropriate, make recommendations on how these could be taken forward.
  6. Evaluate the balance of STFC’s programmes, and recommend a future research portfolio.

Last updated: 31 March 2022

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