SLU news

New report: SLU research has high international standard

Published: 26 March 2019

SLU research has high international, scientific standard and was in many cases deemed world-leading. Several research groups received the highest marks when it came to communicating research findings and creating societal change. All of this and more can be found in the Quality and Impact 2018 evaluation, which has now been published.

The duty of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, is to develop knowledge of biological natural resources and how to use them in a sustainable manner. For this assignment to succeed, SLU research must be of the highest quality and research findings must be useful to society. In order to see how the university is working to meet these objectives, the SLU Board initiated a research evaluation in April 2017: Quality and Impact 2018 (Q&I 2018).


This report describes the general results from this evaluation, which will act as bases for future strategic decisions at various university levels. Q&I 2018 is the second evaluation of its kind at SLU – the first one was carried out in 2009.

SLU received the highest scientific quality marks in the following fields: forest mycology and pathology, chemical ecology, geochemistry and organic environmental chemistry, forest genetics and plant physiology, plant molecular biology and microbial ecology.

The external reviewers stated that one of their most striking insights was that SLU is sitting on a “golden egg” thanks to research fields that are critical to life on earth, world-leading expertise, close cooperation with stakeholders and good research infrastructure.

The expert reviewers considered SLU unique in regard to its simultaneous access to these resources; the combination has invaluable potential for SLU to contribute to sustainable societal development.

“The research evaluation has given us time for self-reflection and led to a considerable range of interesting ideas and insights important to the future development of SLU. Now is the time to utilise what we have learned and take necessary measures based on our new insights,” writes Peter Högberg, former Vice-Chancellor of SLU and person primarily responsible for the evaluation.

“The evaluation shows that our research is very important to the world, and I also believe that it will attract talented students to study with us. I am convinced that society needs more SLU students and that this can give us more resources. With a larger education budget, we can also employ more senior lecturers and more of our researchers can become involved in teaching,” says the current Vice-Chancellor of SLU, Karin Holmgren.

The evaluation group consisted of about one hundred international experts within academia, industry and the public sector.

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