Woolf Research Strategy

Rector’s introduction to the 2023-2026 theme

The overall strategic direction of Woolf is defined by the Woolf Mission Statement. The Woolf Research Strategy sets out the strategic direction for research, including research-based teaching.

The  2023-2026 theme is the Future of Human Flourishing. Across all academic disciplines, Woolf is dedicated to advancing the horizon of human understanding and shaping the future of human civilization. Our Research Strategy is based on the conviction that humanity is in a period of unprecedented technological and social changes, which will affect all domains of life and benefit from the inputs of all academic disciplines.

Woolf has existing strengths in technology and the humanities, and will build on these and expand beyond them to support this research mission.

Woolf’s unique collegiate approach to research and teaching provides exceptional exposure to the breadth of ongoing changes in the world because Woolf’s academic staff are globally distributed. Woolf’s members not only develop unique approaches to research and teaching fitting to the challenges they face, but they also have the opportunity to compare these approaches and findings with each other through intercollegiate events and public seminars, which Woolf will continue to expand.

The future of human flourishing in a time of technological and social change will require us to make wise decisions with a knowledge of the past. This is one of the reasons that Woolf is committed both to preserving and to expanding the horizons of human knowledge.

In order to realize the scale of impact that Woolf seeks to have, we will continue to expand our investment in research resources and in the size and rigor of our academic staff. As a young higher education institution, we expect the number of academic disciplines to continue to increase, but we will maintain our focus on the Research Strategy set out here.

Woolf is dedicated to advancing knowledge and shaping the future of human flourishing, and we understand that doing so without  a memory of where we have been would rob us of context and vital resources for navigating where we are going. Our focus is on the challenges and opportunities facing humanity, both now and in the years to come. Our goal is to build a multidisciplinary community of scholars and practitioners who are committed to creating a better future for all people.


Signature of  Dr. Joshua Broggi

Joshua Broggi, PhD

Rector and Head of Institution,

The world is undergoing significant social changes in the context of increasingly powerful computational forces, affecting the way we work, how we move across borders, and the future of humanity. Change is ambiguous, bringing potential benefits, challenges, and harms. Woolf seeks to preserve and advance the horizon of human knowledge, delivering changes to technology and society that advance human flourishing.

The Future of Human Flourishing during Technological and Social Change

Today, Woolf has research and teaching strengths in computer science and adjacent fields: data science, computational science, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and software engineering. Woolf will continue to increase its support for this area of research and teaching developing it into a core strength of the institution. Woolf pursues knowledge as an end in itself but the application of these technologies to other academic disciplines and to the problems facing humanity are also part of Woolf’s agenda.

During the 2023-2026 period, Woolf will begin supporting research in new areas of technology related to the future of human flourishing, seeking to support in particular technological research related to environmental and climate science, including areas where computational excellence can provide unique discoveries.

Today, Woolf maintains a relationship with a network of venture capital investors, who are directed towards companies and inventions originating in Woolf research.

During the 2023-2026 period, we will deepen and formalize those relationships through the creation of a ‘New Ventures Office’, providing greater support for scientists wishing to commercialize new technologies by helping them connect with commercial partners and capital. Woolf will not seek ownership of the intellectual property of Woolf scientists, but we will also evaluate the creation of a capital vehicle for investing in companies emerging from research breakthroughs.

Dedicated Support for Woolf’s Research and Teaching in the Humanities and Business

Today, Woolf has strengths in the humanities and business. In the humanities, Woolf’s research and teaching has been in Classics, History, Language Studies, Philosophy, and Theology. In Business,
Woolf has focussed on international business, entrepreneurship, the innovation economy, and the role of entrepreneurship in the arts economy (especially music).

During the 2023-2026 period, Woolf will seek to deepening its research expertise in the humanities and expand the range of disciplines supported. In particular, Woolf will expand its disciplinary range to include Politics and Psychology.

General Support

Today, Woolf provides all members with access to a central library, which aggregates over 250m academic resources and historical texts.

During the 2023-2026 period, Woolf will invest in its library services and seek to better integrate these with research needs and instructional design requirements.

Today Woolf provides all members with curated information about research grant opportunities, and Woolf provides support on Faculty initiated grant applications.

During the 2023-2026 period, we will deepen and formalize research grant support through the creation of a ‘Research Grant Office’, providing greater support for academics seeking external funding for their research activity. Woolf will also evaluate the formation of a central fund for awarding scholarships and stipends to staff and students engaged in research.

Today, Woolf academics across all disciplines publish their research in a variety of scholarly journals and outlets, and Woolf provides all Academic staff with unique personal research profile which aggregate their publications.

During the 2023-2026 period, Woolf will increase its support for scholars across the institution through the creation of the Woolf University Press. Woolf will also seek to provide greater tracking of the scholarly outputs of its members and support the promotion of the research findings of Woolf’s members.

Today, no doctoral students have yet been awarded their degrees, and Woolf has not yet awarded Professorships in recognition of the teaching and research of its members.

During the 2023-2026 period, Woolf will graduate students in doctoral programs, and the first candidates for the title of Professor will also be evaluated.

Dr. Buz Barstow using high-pressure X-ray crystallography.