Welcome to our second HIGHER ED.ITION for 2017.
This quarterly publication comes at a particularly pivotal time for higher education.
Two weeks ago, the details of the Turnbull Government’s Budget proposals for the sector were unveiled by Education Minister Simon Birmingham.
There is much to analyse about the impact of those measures.
Universities have been working through the detail to assess how their students, staff, universities, research and community engagement would be affected by the package.
We will continue to engage with policy makers in coming weeks and months to ensure decision-making is well informed.
Ahead of the Budget, Universities Australia released analysis highlighting the significant contribution that universities and students have already made to Budget repair since 2011.
This was an important context setter ahead of the announcement of proposals for a further $2.8 billion in cuts to higher education.
That’s not to say the package is all negative. Universities Australia was pleased to see it included a number of priorities for which we have long advocated – particularly the expansion of the demand-driven system to sub-Bachelor places and legislative protection for the flagship equity program HEPPP.
In this HIGHER ED.ITION, we include further analysis beyond our statements over the past few weeks. This looks at the Budget through the prism of universities equipping the nation to grapple with the dramatic economic transformation now underway.
University of Tasmania Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Rathjen adds depth to that picture with a piece on how universities can reinvigorate regional economies.
And UTS Chancellor Catherine Livingstone contributes a thoughtful piece on how universities forge the people-to-people connections that are the bedrock of innovation.
The University of Queensland’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Hoj writes that telling our success stories about great university-industry collaboration can help to generate more of them.
And, two months after the sector launched its first Indigenous strategy, Southern Cross University Vice-Chancellor Professor Adam Shoemaker sees it as another important step as universities deepen the nation’s understanding of our history, tradition and identity.
As the UA baton passes to a new Chair, we include reflections on the past two years from outgoing Chair Professor Barney Glover and the priorities of incoming Chair Professor Margaret Gardner.
And we share with those of you who weren’t able to join us just some of the many highlights from this year’s hugely successful Universities Australia higher education conference.
These include the brilliant keynote address by former US Ambassador to Australia Jeffrey Bleich on the role of universities in an era of global political upheaval. And a deeply moving rendition of Archie Roach’s ‘Took The Children Away’ by young Ngiyampaa man Sebastian Kelly-Toiava at the launch of the Indigenous strategy.
Until next time,
Professor Barney Glover and Belinda Robinson
Chair and Chief Executive