So, off we went to the RAE web site to find out the following:
We clicked on 'Site Index' (bottom of web site), and then clicked on 'Complaints', followed by a click on 'Allegations concerning Higher Education institutions and the 2008 RAE', to read the following:
'Allegations of financial irregularity or impropriety, mismanagement, waste or fraud (public interest disclosures) about the higher education institutions (HEIs) that are funded by each of the higher education funding bodies (HEFCE, SFC, HEFCW and DEL) are handled by different procedures in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland respectively. Public interest disclosures concerning HEIs and the 2008 RAE will be handled through these same procedures.' Followed by a single line: 'The procedures to follow if you wish to make an allegation concerning an HEI and the 2008 RAE are described.'
So we clicked on 'procedures to follow', to read the following:
'Procedures for making allegations concerning higher education institutions and the 2008 RAE. The 2008 RAE is managed on behalf of the higher education funding bodies for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (HEFCE, SFC, HEFCW and DEL) by a project team based at HEFCE.
Different procedures are in place for making and investigating allegations of financial irregularity or impropriety, mismanagement, waste or fraud (public interest disclosures) about the higher education institutions (HEIs) funded by each funding body. Disclosures concerning HEIs and the RAE will be handled through these same procedures. [So far this part is a repeat.]
If you wish to make such an allegation concerning an HEI and the 2008 RAE, either about its preparations for the RAE or its submissions, then you should follow the procedure that applies in the relevant country.
- For allegations concerning an English HEI funded by HEFCE, please follow HEFCE's procedure.
- For allegations concerning a Scottish HEI funded by SFC, please follow the procedure described in paragraph 23 of Guide for members of governing bodies of Scottish higher education institutions and good practice benchmarks' (SHEFC, HE/05/99)
- You can also refer to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman
- For allegations concerning a Welsh HEI funded by HEFCW, please follow HEFCW's procedure
- For allegations concerning a Northern Ireland HEI funded by DEL, please follow DEL's procedure
The RAE team will handle allegations of perceived irregularity within RAE submissions that it receives from chairs or members of RAE panels during the assessment process through the RAE data verification procedures.'
Wow... In other words, there is no option for individual research active academics that have a problem with their RAE submission - or the lack of it/them - to take up the matter with the RAE - There is no such option! Full-stop.