About our research

At the University of Derby, we nurture and encourage research excellence across all our disciplines and all career stages. Our researchers are generating distinctive, world-leading and impactful research.

A vibrant environment

We recognise the strong link between excellent research and an excellent student experience. Our aim at the University of Derby is to produce research that is high impact, high profile and beneficial. We are investing in our students, our staff and our research infrastructure to help us achieve this.

We have a vibrant research environment with over 330 doctoral students and support those in the early stages of their career via our early-career researcher forum. 

We also have nearly 200 research-active staff across the University, with over 700 research outputs recorded on UDORA, our comprehensive, open access repository. 

A significant contribution

Our research is wide-ranging and internationally recognised and our research teams are working on projects that are making a significant contribution to national and international policy agendas. Research includes: 

Our latest research news

A young girl standing in a meadow with a dandelion

Young people’s connection to nature drops sharply from the age of 11 and doesn’t recover until they are 30 – with significant implications for their engagement with pro-environmental behaviours like recycling or buying eco-friendly products.

A boy taking part in creative activities as part of This is Derby

A delegation showcasing the success of the This is Derby project has been invited to attend the International Arts in Society Conference, taking place in Lisbon, Portugal from 19-21 June.

The University of Derby is leading a project to support student mental health through the higher education curriculum, backed by funding from the Office for Students.

A ‘synthetic human cardiovascular system’ created in Derby and nicknamed ‘Steve’ has been selected as one of the UK’s pioneering university research programmes which can help improve the nation's health.

Waterway surrounded by greenery.

The University of Derby, Rolls-Royce and the Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust have come together to tackle plastic pollution in local Derbyshire canals.

Read all our research news
conducting a psychology experiment

Explore our research

We want you to find the research subject area that's right for you and our research categories are designed to help you do that.

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Join the #research conversation

From the future of energy supply to vaccines to reality TV - what our researchers are working on.

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Our partners

Our research is supported by high-profile research funders including Research England, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and Innovate UK. 

We have continued to expand our collaborative research and knowledge-exchange activities across a range of businesses from international PLCs to local owner-managed small businesses – all of which bring benefit back to our research and teaching and our region. 

We remain in the ‘top 10’ Universities for the highest number of Knowledge Transfer Partnerships being delivered and our European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) projects have a combined value of £10.3m. Such partnerships ensure that applied research is an integral part of the University.

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Research with us

We are particularly interested in applications for doctoral research that address specific areas.

Our research interest areasOur research interest areas

Research events

pupils in a school classroom

Our inaugural Compassion in Schools for Educators day brings together a community of experts, researchers and experienced practitioners. This event is for anyone working within or linked to education wishing to gain knowledge of compassionate practice skills and embed them in their curriculums.