Research Quality Assessment
ANVUR evaluates the quality of the outcomes of the research of the universities and research institutes, mainly through peer review, as mandated by the Presidential Decree no. 76/2010 (under art. 3, paragraph 1, letter a and paragraph 2, letter b).
The Research Quality Assessment exercises (VQR) aim at evaluating the research outcomes of public universities and research institutes (as well as those of private institutions that voluntarily submit their research outcomes for evaluation). Currently, VQR is carried out every five years according to the law no. 232/2016, art. 1, paragraph 339; the Minister of Education, University and Research has to issue a special decree establishing the guidelines and providing for the resources needed to carry out the research assessment exercise.
The VQR exercises aim to provide an up-to-date assessment of the state of research in the various scientific fields, in order to promote the improvement of research quality in the assessed institutions and to allocate the merit-based share of the Fondo di Finanziamento Ordinario (FFO) – the financing fund of the Italian university system. This share has been increasing and, according to the law no. 98/2013, is due to reach a maximum of 30 percent over the next few years.
The first VQR exercise, covering the years between 2004 and 2010, took place after the issuance of the Ministerial Decree no. 17/2011. Its findings were made public in the summer of 2013. The second VQR exercise, covering the years between 2011 and 2014, took place after the issuance of the Ministerial Decree no. 458/2015 and its findings were made public in February 2017. The two exercises adhered to broadly similar rules.