Cranfield is the postgraduate specialist for research and teaching in science, engineering, technology and management. As one of the top five research-intensive universities in the UK, we are making a significant difference in the real world and we do this by working in partnership with some of the world's greatest organisations.
Cranfield is world-leading in its contribution to global innovation. With our emphasis on the aerospace, agri-food, defence and security, environmental technology, leadership and management, manufacturing and transport systems sectors, we have changed the way society thinks, works and learns.
We generate and transform knowledge, translating it to the benefit of society. Our partners, from micro SMEs to the largest blue-chip multinationals, from governments across the world to NGOs and charities, tell us this is what they value about Cranfield.
Innovation is part of Cranfield’s ‘corporate DNA’, evolved over 60 years of commitment to this agenda.
Our work informs policy for governments and produces new technologies and products for the world of commerce. We draw on this pool of research and consultancy to provide our students with a distinctive ‘real-world’ learning environment, allowing them to develop as professionals and transfer their new knowledge to the global economy. This has always been the ‘Cranfield way’ but it has never been more important than in today’s world.
Areas of specialisation
- Defence and Security
- Energy and Power
- Environmental Technology
- Leadership and Management
- Transport Systems
Cranfield facts and figures
We pride ourselves on our international culture, welcoming students from 106 countries.
The success of Cranfield rests on the knowledge, skills and abilities of our staff which are key to our competitive advantage.
Our income is spread across teaching, research and other activities.
Teaching and research
Cranfield is a forward-thinking institution where exceptional teaching and research leads to world-changing solutions.
University league table rankings
University league tables are created to assist students entering higher education and covers institutions offering both undergraduate and postgraduate study.
We have set ourselves a challenging target of reducing our carbon footprint by 50% by 2020, which is the most ambitious target in the UK university sector.
The theme running through Cranfield’s 60-year history is a commitment to and passion for applied research which makes a difference to the world in the fields of science, technology and management.
The forerunner of Cranfield University was the College of Aeronautics, created in 1946 and based at the RAF station in Cranfield, Bedfordshire. Through the 1950s and 1960s, the development of many aspects of aircraft research and design led to considerable growth and diversification into other technologies and into manufacturing and management.
In 1969, the College of Aeronautics became The Cranfield Institute of Technology incorporated by Royal Charter with full degree-awarding powers, and new departments were set up to cover the work in the new subject areas, such as the Cranfield School of Management.
The last thirty years have seen further substantial progress, including an academic partnership with the Defence Academy, UK, at Shrivenham in Wiltshire. The result is that Cranfield has grown to become the largest centre in Europe for applied research, development and design.
Cranfield's awards and rankings
Organisations throughout the world have recognised Cranfield’s excellence in teaching and research. Recognitions range from those given to us by the Royal Anniversary Trust which awards the Queen's Anniversary Prize for Further and Higher Education, to those made to individual members of staff and departments.
As well as awards and accolades, we are also recognised through research rankings such as the Research Excellence Framework (REF) which, in 2014, assessed that 81% of the research at Cranfield University is world-leading or internationally excellent.
It is worth pointing out that university league tables, created to assist students entering higher education, cover institutions offering both undergraduate and postgraduate study. As we do not have undergraduate programmes and are wholly postgraduate, Cranfield University is often not included in league table rankings. Business schools are ranked differently and our business school consistently performs well in Business School Rankings.
We present awards to organisations in some of the areas in which we specialise. Such external awards include The Best Factory Awards which bring together the best manufacturers in the country to share best practice and to celebrate their achievements, and which help to ensure the UK manufacturing industry is at the cutting edge.
Each year we also recognise excellence in our student body through a variety of awards presented at our graduation ceremonies.
The calibre and expertise of our staff means they are frequently invited to be members of external judging panels for industry-related awards given to others in recognition of their business success.