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A-rated researchers

Researchers who are unequivocally recognised by their peers as leading international scholars in their field for the high quality and impact of their recent research outputs.

A1: A researcher in this group is recognised by all reviewers as a leading scholar in her/his field internationally for the high quality and wide impact (i.e. beyond a narrow field of specialisation) of her/his recent research outputs.

A2: A researcher in this group is recognised by the overriding majority of reviewers as a leading scholar in her/his field internationally for the high quality and impact (either wide or confined) of her/his recent research outputs.

B-rated researchers

Researchers who enjoy considerable international recognition by their peers for the high quality and impact of their recent research outputs.

 

B1: All reviewers are firmly convinced that the applicant enjoys considerable international recognition for the high quality and impact of his/her recent research outputs, with some of them indicating that he/she is a leading international scholar in the field.

B2: All or the overriding majority of reviewers are firmly convinced that the applicant enjoys considerable international recognition for the high quality and impact of his/her recent research outputs.

B3: Most of the reviewers are convinced that the applicant enjoys considerable international recognition for the high quality and impact of his/her recent research outputs.

C-rated researchers

Established researchers with a sustained recent record of productivity in the field who are recognised by their peers as having:

  • produced a body of quality work, the core of which has coherence and attests to ongoing engagement with the field;
  • demonstrated the ability to conceptualise problems and apply research methods to investigating them.

 

C1: All of the reviewers are firmly convinced that the applicant is an established researcher as described and who, on the basis of the high quality and impact of his/her recent research is regarded by:
Some reviewers as already enjoying considerable international recognition;
OR
The overriding majority of reviewers as being a scholar who has attained a sound/solid international standing in their field, but not yet considerable international recognition;
OR
The overriding majority of reviewers as being a scholar whose work focuses mainly on local and/or regional issues and who as a scholar at a nationally leading level has substantially advanced knowledge and understanding in the field by contributing to new thinking, a new direction and/or a new paradigm.*

C2: All of the reviewers are firmly convinced that the applicant is an established researcher as described. The applicant may, but need not, enjoy some international recognition for the quality and impact of his/her recent research outputs.

C3: Most of the reviewers concur that the applicant is an established researcher (as described).

P-rated researchers

Researchers in this group are recognised by all or the overriding majority of reviewers as having demonstrated the potential of becoming future international leaders in their field on the basis of exceptional research performance and output from their doctoral and/or early post-doctoral research careers.

Also known as the NRF President’s Award.

 

Researchers in this group are recognised by all or the overwhelming majority of reviewers as having demonstrated the potential of becoming future international leaders in their field on the basis of exceptional research performance and output from their doctoral and/or early post-doctoral research careers.

Y-rated researchers

Young researchers (40 years or younger), who have held the doctorate or equivalent qualification for less than five years at the time of application, and who are recognised as having the potential to establish themselves as researchers within a five-year period after evaluation, based on their performance and productivity as researchers during their doctoral studies and/or early postdoctoral careers.

Y1: A young researcher (within 5 years from PhD) who is recognised by all reviewers as having the potential (demonstrated by research products) to establish him/herself as a researcher with some of them indicating that he/she has the potential to become a future leader in his/her field.

Or

A young researcher (within 5 years from PhD) who is recognised by all or the overriding majority of reviewers as having the potential to establish her/himself as a researcher of considerable international standing on the basis of the quality and impact of her/his recent research outputs.

Y2: A researcher in this group is recognised by all or the overriding majority of reviewers as having the potential to establish him/herself as a researcher (demonstrated by recent research products).

*This definition is restricted to those researchers whose area of research prevents (or precludes) them from meeting the requirements of either definition 1 or definition 2.

 

For more information on NRF ratings contact the Research Support Services