Integration and alignment of research at ACU

Australian Catholic University (ACU) has released an Academic Draft Change Management plan which proposes a greater integration of research and teaching to provide a more sustainable model for academic excellence.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Enterprise Professor Abid Khan said the proposed plan would implement a model that fully integrated the university’s diverse research communities with their relevant Faculties and bring its research and teaching activities closer together.

“A more balanced and sustainable academic model will integrate the university’s diverse research and education offerings more tightly, as we seek to support the university’s academic and economic goals in a contemporary higher education landscape,” Professor Khan said.

“Through this process, we are repositioning ourselves to provide greater institutional transparency into the research being conducted, more closely align discipline and financial resources, foster greater interdisciplinarity, and increase accessibility of resources to the entire research community that will be able to affiliate with the research in relevant themes.”

Staff and students are expected to directly benefit from these changes through closer interactions between students and research active staff. This will improve collaboration between disciplines and support students who are seeking to build research careers.

The Academic Draft Change Management Plan includes positions proposed to be disestablished and identifies areas where teams will be integrated. The draft plan includes a consultation period and a call for expressions of interest for voluntary redundancy.

It is the second of three plans intended to realign research and teaching across the institution and to address the financial shortfall that the university faces.

In August the university embarked on a case for change, Enabling our Future, that identifies the objectives for the three priority areas to realise its vision for a sustainable future.

These priorities are:

  • Delivering a world-class student experience;
  • Implementing an integrated model for research excellence; and
  • Optimising operational services to support teaching and research.

The change agenda will increase institutional resilience through realigning the workforce and focusing on new revenue generation.

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