Research Portal

Research Portal profiles world leading research excellence
at the Queen's University of Belfast

  • Queen’s University 9th in the UK for research intensity 18 Dec, 2014 Figures released this morning by the national Higher Education Statistics Agency have confirmed that Queen’s University has been placed joint 9th in the UK for research intensity. Queen’s returned over 95 per cent of academic staff, which was the fifth largest percentage of staff returned in the REF 2014. The University also has 14 subject areas ranked within the UK’s top 20 and 76 per cent of its research classified in the top two categories of world leading and internationally excellent. These results are part of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 results, also released this morning, which announced that over 75 per cent of Queen’s researchers are undertaking world-class or internationally leading research. The ‘Research Excellence Framework,’ which assesses the quality and impact of UK high...)
  • Queen’s Physical Activity Loyalty scheme launched 18 Dec, 2014 A Physical Activity Loyalty scheme which rewards users’ “ground miles” with incentives has been launched by researchers at the Centre for Public Health, Queen’s University Belfast led by Professor Frank Kee. The scheme developed by Queen’s University uses wireless sensing technology to monitor and reward physical activity, and has been unveiled by the Health Minister and the Chief Medical Officer in Lisburn today. Over 1,300 public sector employees who work in the Lisburn area are being given the chance to take part in this study to investigate how financial incentives influence workplace physical activity. According to a government report by Dame Carol Black in 2008, improving the wellbeing of the workforce by getting them more active will benefit not only their own health but is also likely to improve a com...)
  • Queen's team reveal the emotions of web users 18 Dec, 2014 A team of data scientists and entrepreneurs at Queen’s University Belfast has created the world’s first real-time metric for measuring how people express emotions on the internet. The unique gauge, dubbed the ‘Adorescore’ can quantify the performance of a brand in an index rating from minus 100 to 100, by monitoring online emotions expressed through thousands of sources from social networks as well media articles. Chris Johnston founder of Adoreboard, the venture capital funded by Queen’s and InvestNI behind the design, believes the innovation presents a major opportunity to revolutionise how businesses can understand and improve customer relationships. He said: “Brands currently spend billions of dollars every year trying to influence how people feel. Yet there is no single metric to understand the imp...)
  • Policing no longer an Orange-Green issue for young people according to Queen’s study 18 Dec, 2014 Young people’s views on the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) are driven by feelings of social inclusion and exclusion rather than traditional, sectarian loyalties, new research from Queen’s University Belfast suggests. Over 800 teenagers, aged between 14-16, were surveyed for the longitudinal study Dynamics of Police Legitimacy Among Young People to examine attitudes towards the PSNI. Those surveyed were from a range of geographical areas, economic, community and ethnic backgrounds. Respondents tended to have positive views of the police overall, with 15 per cent disagreeing that the police did a good job. This group represented a broad cross-section of the population and was not defined by religion or political affiliation. The research found a striking lack of knowledge about policing structures and accountability, ...)
  • Queen’s research highlights lessons to be learned from Belfast flag protest 18 Dec, 2014 Politicians and civil society must learn from the mistakes made during the Belfast flag protest which cost over £21.9 million to police, a report from researchers at Queen’s University Belfast has revealed. Researchers at the Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice at Queen’s have released a report examining the flag protest that took place in Belfast in December 2012 and early 2013 and analysing the lessons to be learned. The report, titled ‘The Flag Dispute: Anatomy of a Protest’, argues that the flag protest called into question the ability of Northern Ireland’s politicians to resolve political issues within the democratic chambers that are available to them. The report also found that when politicians fail to find agreement on issues, they do not go away. Instead power &...)
  • Queen’s scientist leads study of ‘Super-Earth’ 18 Dec, 2014 Research led by an astronomer at Queen’s University Belfast could pave the way in the search for life on other planets. Up to now, only space-based telescopes have been able to detect planets near the size of the Earth that pass in front of stars like the Sun. An astronomer in the Astrophysics Research Centre at Queen’s University has led an international team to detect a super-Earth, a planet with more mass than Earth but less than Uranus or Neptune, using a telescope on the ground. Previously, this has only been possible for one other super-Earth circling a star much fainter and cooler than the Sun. This breakthrough opens up new ways to study other worlds. The planet, called 55 Cancri e, periodically passes in front of a star only 40 light years from the Earth. The star can even be seen with the naked eye on a clear and moo...)
  • New Queen’s research suggests UK honey bee parasite linked to climate change 25 Nov, 2014 Researchers at Queen’s University Belfast have found that the spread of an exotic parasite that threatens the UK’s honey-bee population could be speeded up by global warming. The gut parasite Nosema ceranae – which originates in Asia but can now be found worldwide – is likely to cause increasing damage to UK bees as the Earth heats up through climate change. The new finding that this parasite not only has a superior competitive ability, but that its numbers could rise with climate change, has been published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Co-author of the study and Adjunct Reader at Queen’s School of Biological Sciences, Professor Robert Paxton said: “This emerging parasite is more susceptible to cold than its original close relative, possibly reflecting its presumed origin in east As...)
  • Queen’s research bursts myths surrounding demise of De Lorean 25 Nov, 2014 Research from Queen’s University Belfast has shed new light on what went wrong with the De Lorean Motor Company and the business lessons that can be learned from the failure of the iconic car manufacturer. John De Lorean’s firm and the demise of the Northern Ireland produced gull-winged car in the 1970’s is often presented as a story of irrationality, involving either greed or stupidity. One popular version highlights De Lorean’s limitations as an entrepreneur, while another says the mistake lay in the UK government’s industrial policy. But research conducted by Dr Graham Brownlow, from Queen’s University’s Management School, is correcting these popular but misleading interpretations by improving understanding of the economic and political issues at the time. The research will help local businesse...)
  • Queen’s researchers prove that ash clouds can cross Atlantic Ocean 25 Nov, 2014 Scientists at Queen’s University Belfast have led the discovery of a volcanic ash cloud that travelled from Alaska to Northern Ireland and beyond – overturning previously held assumptions about how far ash deposits can drift, with major implications for the airline industry. The discovery, which was made in partnership with an international team of academics and has been published in the journal Geology, is the first evidence that ash clouds can travel across the Atlantic Ocean, confirming Queen’s as a global leader in research. This particular ash, found in sites across Europe, including Sluggan Bog near Randalstown, Co Antrim, has been traced to an eruption from Mount Bona-Churchill in Alaska, around AD 847. The discovery has significant implications for the aviation industry as well as environmental science, illustrat...)
  • Queen’s success at Green Gown Awards 17 Nov, 2014 Technology developed by Queen’s University Belfast which has the potential to transform million of lives overnight has won a national sustainability award. Researchers in the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering won the Research and Development category of the EAUC Green Gown Awards for their project which will enhance the solar disinfection of water (SODIS). Over 5.6 million people in 30 countries use the SODIS method, but lack any UV indicator technology necessary to ensure 100 per cent success. Research led by Professor Andrew Mills and Dr Katherine Lawrie from Queen’s, and funded by Invest NI, has developed UV dosimeter labels which change colour when the disinfection is complete. Professor Mills said: “Our UV dosimeter labels use inexpensive sustainable materials, contributing little extra cost per SODIS bot...)