Te Pūkenga research excellence a focus for 2026 PBRF


Te Pūkenga research excellence a focus for 2026 PBRF

November 16, 2023 | 3 min read

Te Pūkenga will participate in the 2026 Performance-Based Research Fund (PBRF) process.

This commitment recognises the importance of research and rangahau in the future of Te Pūkenga, Pourangi Mātauranga me ngā Pūnaha Ako | DCE ACLS Dr Megan Gibbons says.

Te Pūkenga will encourage kaimahi (staff) to submit individual portfolios of their research and rangahau for the PBRF to achieve the maximum potential benefit for them and for the organisation.

PBRF benefits individual researchers by enhancing their reputation for academic quality. This, in turn, helps to secure research funding, which directly supports research-based teaching and improved research environments, and contributes to strengthening the institution’s reputation.

"This decision signals the value we place on research and rangahau across our national network. Over time, our PBRF ranking will provide a nationally representative marker of our research performance," Dr Gibbons says.

Te Pūkenga is committed to acknowledging the rangahau and research that is already undertaken and wants to sustain and grow it, she says.

As at 3 November, Te Pūkenga had 28,043 ākonga (learners) enrolled in degree and post-graduate studies, including graduate diplomas/certificates, bachelor's degrees (including with honours), post-graduate diplomas and certificates, master’s degrees and professional doctorates.

These ākonga make up 12.4 percent of Te Pūkenga ākonga, and represent 14 percent of New Zealand’s total population of degree and post-graduate enrolments. Other tertiary providers include universities, private training establishments and wānanga.

The aim of the PBRF is to reward and incentivise quality research for Aotearoa New Zealand. It involves a rigorous process run by the Tertiary Education Commission, which assesses the research performance of tertiary education organisations (TEOs) and funds them on the basis of their performance. The process runs every six years.

PBRF is the main way TEOs receive research-specific funding support and for researchers to grow their national and international profiles. Research-active kaimahi and kairangahau (researchers) typically regard PBRF as an important means of external validation of the quality of their overall body of work.

Some Te Pūkenga business divisions have supported involvement in previous PBRF rounds.

"Research and rangahau are essential across our network to maintain the reputation and compliance of our degrees and postgraduate programmes, and to ensure academic recognition for our kaimahi," Dr Gibbons says.

"It’s also hugely important in the way it contributes to knowledge and practice improvements and advances for our industries and professions," she says.