Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA)

The University of Adelaide is esteemed worldwide for its influential contributions, and is committed to continuing the pursuit of research excellence.

The high quality of our research across a vast array of fields was recognised in the Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) evaluation, conducted by the Australian Research Council (ARC).

The third round of ERA results released in December 2015 provide a comprehensive assessment of the University’s research outputs for the period 2008-2013. More than 18,600 individual research outputs by academic staff and affiliates of the University were assessed, including published papers, authored and edited books, book chapters, conference papers, and creative works.

The results confirm many of the University’s fundamental research strengths, in areas including geology, ecology, oncology, nutrition, civil engineering, astronomical sciences, macromolecular chemistry, soil sciences and philosophy.


  • 82% of the University's research sub-fields were assessed as being "above or well above world standard" (rating 4 or 5).
  • Of the 67 individual research sub-fields assessed:
    • More than half (35) achieved the maximum rating of 5 ("well above world standard"), the second highest proportion in the Group of Eight
    • 30% were rated above world standard (4 rating), and
    • 11 have now received a 5 rating across all three ERA rounds (2010, 2012 and 2015).
  • Each of our five major research institutes has been associated with the multiple top ratings of 5 in at least one research area.

We have seen a significant lift in both volume and quality of our research outputs, summarised in the table below:

Category 2015 2012 2010
5 – well above world standard 35 18 16
4 – above world standard 20 21 17
3 – world standard 11 21 27
2 – below world standard 1 6 9
1 – well below world standard 0 1 6
Not Assessed 90 90 82
Assessed Units 67 67 75

For more detailed information, please download the University's full list of ERA results for 2015.

Excellence in research for Australia (ERA)

Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) is a research quality and evaluation system developed by the Australian Research Council (ARC) in conjunction with the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.

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