Objectives, Criteria and Rating of the Assessment

Aalto University Objectives of the Assessment

  • To assess quality and potential of research, arts, design and architecture;
  • To assess the success of multidisciplinary collaboration within Aalto;
  • To assess Aalto's research impact, artistic impact, societal impact, and innovative capacity;
  • To identify leading international spearheads and emerging research strengths;
  • To stimulate and encourage world-class research and artistic activities;
  • To give feedback to the Units of Assessments;
  • To position Units of Assessments nationally and internationally;
  • To strengthen the Aalto University brand
  • To provide cases and evidence of Aalto's development.

The Assessment is based on the following material

  • Written self-assessments, including case studies
  • Bibliometric data, and other indicators of quality and impact of the research and artistic work;
  • Interviews conducted by the Panels during the site visit.

The Panels are asked to assess following subjects and present statements for each Unit of Assessment:

  1. A statement on the research and artistic profile and how the activities relate to the Aalto University strategy and Key Research Areas;
  2. Numerical ratings and written statements for each of the following elements:
    2.1. Excellence, quality and the extent and impact of multidisciplinary collaboration of the  research and artistic activities;
    2.2. Impact of the research and artistic activities on the research/artistic community;
    2.3. Societal impact and the entrepreneurial and innovative capacity;
    2.4. Strengths and weaknesses of the research and artistic environment (SWOT analysis);
    2.5. Future potential
  3. Recommendations for the future

Each Assessment Panel shall reach a collective decision based on the written material, interviews conducted during the site visits, additional material requested by the Panel Chair before/during the site visits, and discussions among the Panel members.

Numerical rating scales for assessment

The numerical rating scale applied in the Assessment is the following:

  • 6 - Outstanding International Level
  • 5 - Excellent International Level
  • 4 - Very Good International Level
  • 3 - Good International Level
  • 2 - Fair International Level
  • 1 - Emerging International Level

For the purposes of defining quality levels, “international” is a quality benchmark. The wording “international level” shall not be equated with work on international themes. Here, “international level” indicates the Units' standing in comparison with internationally established research units in the same field of research. For example, the quality of the interaction between the Unit of Assessment and society (i.e. the societal impact) may be assessed to "Outstanding International Level" even if the interaction takes place mainly at the national or even local level, if this is the case also in the best international units in the same field of research.


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