This newly refreshed RGU strategy recognises all that is good that has been achieved in RGU, and it also points us to new opportunities and new projects that will make the university known nationally and internationally.

Garthdee CampusA Clear Future

RGU's mission

RGU’s mission is to transform people and communities.  It does this by ensuring that our discovery of knowledge and our dissemination of scholarship have the greatest possible economic, social and cultural impact.

RGU’s vision

RGU aspires to be recognised, in Scotland and beyond, as a distinctive university leading and shaping the debate on the future of higher education and placing students at the centre of the education it offers. It will be known for the impact of its teaching, scholarship and translational research, the employability of its graduates, its influence in the region and nation, its growing global profile, and its strong interdisciplinary focus on a small number of key questions and issues of concern to the local and global community. It will achieve its goals in partnership with academic, voluntary, public and business organisations that share its ideals and aspirations.

The university will enter the global university rankings, diversify and secure its income and resources, and enter into close collaborative agreements with key strategic partners.

RGU will be a model university of the future and will shape its own culture, practice and organisation accordingly.

RGU’s key strategic aims

In order to achieve our vision, we will commit ourselves to a set of key strategic aims:

  • Teaching and learning: inspire all individuals to achieve their maximum potential and excel in the world of tomorrow.
  • Extending access to learning: enable individuals to achieve their ambitions throughout life whatever their circumstances.
  • Student experience: support students and graduates to enjoy and prosper within a vibrant learning community.
  • Research: be recognised for our contribution to the growth of innovation through advancing internationally excellent translational research in our areas of strategic focus
  • Commercialisation: harness our intellectual and physical assets so they generate value to the economy and are profitable to the university.
  • The regional community: contribute to and be an active leader in the development of the regional community.
  • Partnerships: secure strategic partnerships with a small number of globally recognised universities and companies that will support the university’s key ambitions.
  • Our university: empower staff and students to develop a strong and engaged community.


A Clear Future - for a leading university in a new era (PDF 340KB)

  • Enabling Strategies

    The university has also developed four enabling strategies to support its strategic plan.

  • Strategic Statements

    To make our strategy accessible to our different stakeholders we have developed a series of strategic statements.

Key Performance Indicators

The university has developed 10 key performance indicators (KPIs) to assist in monitoring the implementation of its strategy as articulated in A Clear Future for a leading university in a new era.

The current list of KPI's are:

Learning and Teaching

  • KPI 1: Performance in the HESA success rate of Scottish domiciled undergraduate entrants against the Scottish sector average
  • KPI 2: Performance in the Destination of Leavers in Higher Education survey (employability)

Extending Access to Learning

  • KPI 3: The proportion of Scottish-domiciled undergraduate entrants from the 20% and 40% most deprived postcodes
  • KPI 4: Headcount of and revenue from non-SFC funded students

Student Experience

  • KPI 5: Overall Student Satisfaction as measured through the National Student Survey (NSS)


  • KPI 6: The university’s research income as reported in the financial statements
  • KPI 7: The quality of the university’s research as measured by citations

Regional Community

  • KPI 8: Each year, shape debate and decisions on issues affecting the region

Our University

  • KPI 9: The commitment of staff as measured through the Staff Commitment Survey
  • KPI 10a: Earnings before Interest and Depreciation (EBID) from publicly funded activity as reported in financial statements
  • KPI 10b: Earnings before Interest and Depreciation from non-publicly funded activity as reported in financial statement
  • KPI 10c: Cash generation from operations

The most recent annual report on the progress of this is available:

Annual Report of Progress 2014 - 15 (PDF 360KB)

Outcome Agreement

All higher education institutions in Scotland are required to enter in to an Outcome Agreement each year with the Scottish Funding Council (SFC).

The Agreement covers a 3 year period and is reviewed and updated each year, following guidance issued by the SFC.

The SFC issues guidance about specific national performance measures.

These are grouped into seven Aims:

  • Aim 1 Improve access to higher education for people from the widest possible range of backgrounds
  • Aim 2 High quality, efficient and effective learning – learner journeys are short, efficient and effective as possible and learners experience the highest quality of learning and teaching and achieve successful outcomes
  • Aim 3 Right learning in the right place – secure coherent provision of higher education in Scotland in line with the SFC’s statutory obligation
  • Aim 4 A developed workforce – learners who have the skills, knowledge and entrepreneurial spirit to get a job and progress their career; and institutions that respond to the skills needs of the economy locally and nationally
  • Aim 5 A research base that is internationally competitive and improving its reputation and standing in the world
  • Aim 6 University-industry collaboration – deliver a step-change in the engagement of business and industry with universities, removing any barriers to the exploitation of research for economic and wider societal benefits
  • Aim 7 Sustainable institutions – ensure high quality of governance and management for institutions delivering long-term and financial and environmentally sustainable interactions

The current Outcome Agreement for the academic years 2014/15 – 2016/17:

Outcome Agreement 2014-15 to 2016-17 (PDF 175MB)
The Agreement for 2015/16 – 2017/18 has been approved by the Board of Governors and by the SFC:

Outcome Agreement 2015 to 2018 (PDF 630KB)Outcome Agreement 2016/17 (PDF 864KB)

The university’s performance against the targets set in the Agreement is monitored and that performance is reviewed by the Board of Governors. An annual ‘self assessment’ report is made to the SFC.

Contact Details

Dr Duncan Cockburn
Director of Planning and Policy Development Office of the Principal and Vice-Chancellor
Tel: 01224 262194

Mr Ian Croft
Policy Officer
Tel: 01224 262076

Mr Nick Patience
Market Insight Manager
Tel: 01224 262035

Mrs Yat Sandilands
Planning Coordinator
Tel: 01224 262066

Mrs Alison Watson
Strategic Projects Coordinator
Tel: 01224 262157

Office of the Principal and Vice-Chancellor
Garthdee House
Robert Gordon University
Garthdee Road
AB10 7QB