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Submissions 

CHASS Submissions



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University Research Commercialisation Scheme
University Research Commercialisation Scheme
8 April 2021

RE: University Research Commercialisation Scheme

As President of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) in Australia, I write on behalf of the CHASS Board to give our perspectives on the University Research Commercialisation Scheme. CHASS is a peak body with a
membership of over 40 HASS organizations, including academic discipline associations,
universities and members from HASS associated industries.

In this submission I make two overarching statements before addressing questions raised in the Consultation Paper released by the Department of Education, Skills and
Employment. I conclude by noting areas in which commercialisation in the Humanities
Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) sector can be supported. Read on... 

 


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JOBS READY GRADUATES LEGISLATION CONSULTATION
JOBS READY GRADUATES LEGISLATION CONSULTATION
14 August 2020

Dear Minister Tehan

As President of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) in Australia, I write on behalf of CHASS in response to the draft legislation for the Job-ready Graduates Package released this week.

Others have noted that the proposed changes will likely not have the effects the government desires and may have deleterious unintended consequences. I wish to focus on the value of education in HASS disciplines for producing job ready graduates, and the burden the changes will impose on our next generation of Australians, particularly young women.

While encouraging additional students towards the STEM disciplines has some merit, there is no reason to actively dissuade students from studying subjects like criminology, history or philosophy. To do so runs counter to an emerging consensus that current developments in the domestic labour market makes the skills learned in HASS more valuable.(1) Some of the fastest growing job areas for university graduates are new, many of which require exactly the skills and experiences that the study of HASS subjects can provide. Content Specialists, Customer Officers, Data Scientists, and Sustainability Analysts are in high demand. These jobs did not exist five years ago, and a strong humanities or social science degree provides a foundation for working in these and the new, related fields that will inevitably emerge in the coming years. Australia’s global position as an English speaking, cosmopolitan society in the Asia Pacific region, with a world-class higher education sector, means that our competitive advantage lies in areas closely aligned to the study of human action and society in all its myriad forms.

For both STEM and HASS graduates, the transition to the labour force is more complex than in the past and efforts to support work-integrated learning and industry engagement are important. However, investment in this area (which we strongly support) should not be narrowly focused for graduates from a small range of disciplines. Emerging high-end manufacturing and STEM-based industries will increasingly require the skills HASS graduates bring, as reflected in the cross-disciplinary graduate programs that many STEM employers now offer.

HASS is core to universities continuing role as publicly engaged institutions serving the Australian community. The publics that our universities are part of face challenges, involving significant technological, environmental, economic, demographic and cultural changes. The knowledge and insights drawn from the study of HASS are essential to understanding and supporting the publics our universities serve. This is particularly true for universities with a strong place-based mission, for example in regional areas or in the growing outer suburbs of our major cities. To reduce access to the study of history and society at these universities runs counter to the aim of building skills and knowledge relevant to these regions.

I note with concern that the HASS fields that face the largest fee increases tend to have substantially more women than men enrolled in them. The evidence is that while there may be some shifts at the margins, most women will continue to enroll in these subjects, driven by a passion for theirs fields of study and recognition of the value of the resulting skills to the community. While the proposed changes are unlikely to improve pathways to employment for graduates, they will certainly burden the next generation with debts that will negatively impact on their future careers and family choices. Analysis shows that if this legislation goes forward in its current form young women will be burdened with approximately half a billion dollars more each year in debt as they invest in their education.(2)

Australia needs to invest in higher education to prepare graduates for the jobs of the future, not saddle them with additional debt. I am encouraged by the additional places to be made available to students in coming years, but this cannot be done without investing in the next generation of HASS students as well. The people and place-focused skills that HASS graduates can provide the Australian community are essential. I am hopeful that the consultation period will lead to a rethinking of the proposed legislation, attentive to the important risks and opportunities I have outlined here. CHASS is happy to offer access to its extensive network of HASS expertise – including expertise on the future of work, student choice and outcomes, and on our higher education sector – to assist in redesigning the legislation.

Sincerely

Dan Woodman
TR Ashworth Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Melbourne
President, Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.

1. https://www.humanities.org.au/issue-item/the-power-of-the-humanities/

Social Sciences Shape the Nation

https://www.thebritishacademy.ac.uk/publications/skills-qualified-future-quantifying-demand-arts-hum

2. https://bcec.edu.au/assets/2020/07/Higher-ed-changes_BCEC_FINAL-130720.pdf





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LETTER FROM HASS ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSING CHANGES TO HASS DEGREE FEES
LETTER FROM HASS ASSOCIATIONS OPPOSING CHANGES TO HASS DEGREE FEES
Att. Hon. Dan Tehan
Minister for Education


Dear Minister,

We are writing this open letter in response to the recent announcement by the Federal Government that student fees for university courses in society and culture, humanities, and communications will be drastically increased. You have justified this decision on the grounds of funnelling students into ‘job-relevant’ degrees. This is directly against the best advice and evidence that the skills provided by HASS study are increasingly important, in fact, essential to our future economy and society. Studying Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences equips students with highly valuable skills in critical thinking, creative problem solving, effective communication, advanced analysis and interpretation, and the ability to construct reasoned arguments and to question assumptions. These skills are important now more than ever as the world faces an uncertain future. The Arts and Humanities are the foundation of building a fair and prosperous society.

These changes you have announced will not help prepare the next generation for the future of work but will risk making the study of our history, society, culture and place in the world out of reach of all but the most wealthy students, at a time when this knowledge is more important than ever. Training in the Arts and Humanities must be accessible for all students, where equity, diversity and a plurality of voices are vital.

As academics who research, teach, and were trained in society and culture, humanities, and communications, we have seen first-hand the value of studying these fields to our students, and in turn to Australian and wider society. We note how many of our leaders across all sectors have HASS educations, including yourself and many of your parliamentary colleagues.
We condemn these fee increases and all that they represent. They are unfair and the greater burden you are placing on the next generation will only exacerbate widespread job insecurity for them. It will also add to the deep precarity felt by many of our world-leading HASS academics, and likely lead to a significant knowledge dearth at a time when Australia is in most need of these research leaders.
We welcome positive opportunities for university students in Australia, but not at the expense of those degrees that have been arbitrarily and incorrectly deemed irrelevant for employment. We call on you to provide equitable access to higher education for all young people, no matter what they want to study, not least of all because the demand for HASS skills from employers has dramatically risen in the past decade. To not do so would be an unconscionable attack on Australia’s future.

Yours,

Dr Catherine Hoad, Chair, International Association for the Study of Popular Music, Australia-Aotearoa/New Zealand Branch (IASPM-ANZ).

Associate Professor Dan Woodman, President, Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS), and President, The Australian Sociological Association (TASA).

Associate Professor Tama Leaver, Vice President, Association of Internet Researchers (AoIR).

Professor Vicki Karaminas, President, Popular Culture Association of Australia and New Zealand (PopCAANZ).

Associate Professor Elizabeth Stephens, President, Cultural Studies Association of Australasia (CSAA).

Associate Professor Sora Park, President, & Associate Professor David Nolan, Vice-President, Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA).

Dr Julia Prendergast, Chair of the Executive Committee, Australasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP). Distinguished Professor Jen Webb, Australasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP).

Dr Alex Wake, President, Journalism Education and Research Association of Australia.

Dr Bettina Frankham, President, Australian Screen Production Education & Research Association (ASPERA).

Professor Will Christie, Director, Australasian Consortium of Humanities Research Centres.

Dr Jonathan Hutchinson, Treasurer, Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA), and Secretary, International Association of Public Media Research.

Dr Tess Ryan, President, Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association (ACRAWSA).

Professor Joy Damousi, President, Australian Historical Association (AHA).

Associate Professor Giselle Bastin, President, Australian University Heads of English (AUHE)

Dr Adelle Sefton-Rowston, President, Australasian Universities Language and Literature Association (AULLA).

Professor Marion Maddox, President, Australian Association for the Study of Religions (AASR).

Associate Professor Lisa Wynn, President, Australian Anthropological Society (AAS).

Associate Professor Lea Beness, President, Australasian Women in Ancient World Studies (AWAWS).

Dr Peter Acton, President, Humanities 21

Dr Timothy Peters, President, Law, Literature & the Humanities Association of Australasia (LLHAA).

Associate Professor Ilana Mushin, President, The Australian Linguistic Society (ALS).

Dr Trish Luker, President, Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand (LSAANZ).

Associate Professor Beatrice Trefalt, President, Japanese Studies Association of Australia (JSAA).

Dr Iva Glisic and Dr Samantha Owen, National Convenors, Australian Women’s History Network.

Dr Pauline Griffiths, Principal, Quality Teaching Australia (QTA).

Dr Wendy Garden, President, Art Association of Australia & New Zealand (AAANZ).

Professor Emerita Jean Fornasiero FAHA, President, Languages and Cultures Network for Australian Universities (LCNAU).

Professor Peter Harrison, Director, Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH).

Professor Paul Millar, President, Australasian Association for Digital Humanities (aaDH).

Dr Tiina Manne, President, Australian Archaeological Association (AAA).

Professor Noah Riseman, President, International Australian Studies Association (InASA).

Dr Jonathan Crichton, President, Applied Linguistics Association of Australia (ALAA).

Professor Felicity Cox, President, Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association (ASSTA)

Associate Professor Helen Caple, President, Australian Systemic Functional Linguistics Association (ASFLA).

Associate Professor Tom Stevenson, President, Australasian Society for Classical Studies (ASCS).

Helen Lardner, President, International Council for Monuments and Sites (Australia ICOMOS).

Anita Yousif, President, Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology (ASHA)

If you are a HASS Association who would like to add your name to the above letter, please email membership@chass.org.au.



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WHAT MAKES US HUMAN IN A WORLD IN CRISIS?
WHAT MAKES US HUMAN IN A WORLD IN CRISIS?
The humanities, arts and social sciences make a vital contribution to Australian life. The Council for Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) is a voice for the sector. To support our members, CHASS has moved to a ‘pay what you can’ model for the coming year.

The present COVID-19 crisis is an unprecedented public health emergency. Yet it has highlighted the rich web of human connections that underpins everything from global trade to our everyday life.

It has also thrown into stark relief the divisions and inequalities that run through our society.

Our social and cultural life has changed as well, shifting into the virtual realm, and highlighting how the arts bring hope and joy, keeping us informed and entertained, during good times and bad.

This crisis is changing how we live. We cannot go back to living the way we did before, whether we want to or not.

The medical sciences are leading us towards the eventual end of the pandemic. Yet, now and in the months ahead, we will also have to make big decisions about how we live together: about issues at the heart of what makes our lives valuable and the type of world we want to have.

Thinking through these questions is the task and promise of the arts, humanities, and social sciences. If we are to do it well, the HASS sector must be supported. So far in this crisis, it has been neglected or worse.

Our universities, and the broader culture and knowledge sectors allied with HASS, have transformed our cities, and indeed all of Australia. If we don’t support HASS now, we will transform society again… for the worse.

CHASS exists to articulate and promote the value of the HASS sector and its critical role in building the world of the future. We have done this since we were established in 2004 and will continue to do so as we ask, “how will we recover from this crisis?”.

We do this by bringing the humanities, arts and social sciences disciplines together, and allowing them to speak with one voice.

More than ever, that collective voice is needed now, but some of our members have never been in a more precarious position.

To support these members, for the coming year, CHASS is changing its membership fees to a ‘pay what you can’ model, recognising for some in the sector this will be very little, perhaps even nothing.

Whether or not your association is in a position to contribute to us, we want to affirm your voice and we want you as a CHASS member.

Membership is open to organisations with an interest in the future of HASS in Australia, including universities and research centres, peak bodies for the sector – such as museums, libraries, major performing arts companies, craft makers and designers, musicians and music managers –professional associations in HASS disciplines and for HASS teachers, and national collecting institutions.

If you are a current member, I will write to you outlining these changes and our plans for the year. If your organisation would like to join CHASS, please contact us at membership@chass.org.au .

Dan Woodman
President, Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.



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CHASS CALLS ON THE NEXT GOVERNMENT TO STRENGTHEN ITS COMMITMENT TO HASS
CHASS CALLS ON THE NEXT GOVERNMENT TO STRENGTHEN ITS COMMITMENT TO HASS
CHASS calls on the next government to strengthen its commitment to HASS The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) joins its member organisations and other sector peak bodies and associations in calling on the next
government of Australia to strengthen its commitment towards the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) sector.

CHASS endorses the 2019 Election Statement - Shaping the Nation released by the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia and the 8-Point Plan to Humanise the Future released by the Australian Academy of the Humanities. CHASS publication 'Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences: It's everyone's business' (2016) illustrates the diverse ways in which HASS disciplines provide essential services to citizens in all walks of life and reinforces the importance of the sector.

Increased funding support for education and research in the HASS sector is crucial to
securing Australia's future in a global context. The 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap recognises Humanities and Social Science research as a top priority. It is recognised by all leading stakeholders in the research community globally that advances in research (impact and progress) will be made more quickly and more effectively where there
is cross-disciplinary collaboration and a holistic view.

CHASS urges key political players and policymakers to restore crucial funding to the sector, develop a comprehensive national policy for teaching and research in HASS programs, and commit to investing in the future of all Australians.

Professor Joseph M. Siracusa
President – CHASS
On behalf of the members of the CHASS Board

16 May 2019

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STATEMENT FROM CHASS ON THE ARC FUNDING DECISION
STATEMENT FROM CHASS ON THE ARC FUNDING DECISION
STATEMENT FROM THE COUNCIL FOR THE HUMANITIES, ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES ON THE AUSTRALIAN RESEARCH COUNCIL FUNDING DECISION

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) endorses the view of Universities Australia in urging Minister Dan Tehan to follow expert advice, not exercise such a veto in the future and practice greater transparency in research funding grants.

CHASS notes that all major Australian Research Council (ARC) grant applications already have the ‘national benefit’ selection criteria in place and that a new ‘national interest’ test should not be limited to a narrow or short-term understanding of Australia's interests.

CHASS joins its member organisations and other sector peak bodies and associations in
condemning Minister Simon Birmingham’s decision to veto 11 ARC grant applications
totalling over $4 million in 2017 and 2018. CHASS is deeply disappointed that the vetoed projects were from the Humanities sector. Political interference in ARC’s independence and internationally-recognised processes harms Australia’s higher education and research
sector. It undermines academic freedom and threatens the core of academic research. The impact of such interference on the careers and personal lives of the academics involved is profound. We stand in solidarity with our colleagues in the sector and call for the preservation of the integrity of the ARC’s independent peer and expert review process.

Professor Joseph M. Siracusa
President – CHASS
On behalf of the members of the CHASS Board


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AUSTRALIA'S FUTURE UNDERCUT: SOCIAL SCIENCES UNDERFUNDED
AUSTRALIA'S FUTURE UNDERCUT: SOCIAL SCIENCES UNDERFUNDED
Australia’s Social Science peak bodies and associations are joining together to launch the first ever Social Sciences Week in 2018 (September 10-16), in response to inadequate support.

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CHASS RESPONSE TO THE CHANGES IN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S INVESTMENT PLAN FOR NATIONAL COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH INFRASTRUCTURE
CHASS RESPONSE TO THE CHANGES IN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S INVESTMENT PLAN FOR NATIONAL COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH INFRASTRUCTURE

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) is deeply disappointed at the contents of the recently released federal government Investment Plan for national collaborative research infrastructure.

Despite the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap clearly recognising Humanities and Social Science research as a top priority, the announcement provides only very limited support for scoping work in two years’ time.

“You might call it jam tomorrow – and not much of it,” said Professor Joseph M. Siracusa, President of CHASS.

CHASS is especially disheartened at the government’s claim that $43 million allocated to CSIRO, to build a facility to care for insect and plant collections, is dedicated Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) funding.

“There is no way under the sun you could describe this as support for Humanities and Social Sciences research. To announce it this way reflects either monumental misunderstanding or just old-fashioned deception,” said Professor
Siracusa.

HASS infrastructure is focused on people and networks. Investment in the area provides time and space for collaborative research in a system until now dominated by bricks and mortar thinking. Globally, there is increasing recognition of the importance of cross-disciplinary research, with interconnections across STEM and HASS sectors producing better outcomes, more impact and greater societal benefits, than a focus on STEM alone.

New challenges require new infrastructure responses. The Roadmap articulates the need to adapt to a rapidly changing social and economic environment. When it comes to the government's Investment Plan, however, HASS research has been ill-served.
 
Further information
About CHASS
Established in 2004, the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS)
promotes and provides advocacy services for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences in
Australia. It serves as a coordinating forum for academics, teachers, researchers,
professionals and practitioners in the sector. Supporting more than 70 organisations in their
relationships with policy makers and the broader community, CHASS is an important
network for knowledge and skills. It provides a strong voice to the sector and helps members
to contribute to public debate through programs for knowledge exchange and media
awareness. For more information, please vis

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CELEBRATING CONTRIBUTIONS TO AUSTRALIAN CULTURAL AND INTELLECTUAL LIFE: COUNCIL FOR THE HUMANITIES, ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES PRIZES
CELEBRATING CONTRIBUTIONS TO AUSTRALIAN CULTURAL AND INTELLECTUAL LIFE: COUNCIL FOR THE HUMANITIES, ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES PRIZES
Oxford, UK, October 2014

Celebrating contributions to Australian cultural and intellectual life: Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences Prizes

Australia’s Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) has announced the winners of their 2014 prizes for contributions to Australian cultural and intellectual life. Iain McCalman won the 2014 CHASS Australia Prize for his book, The Reef — A Passionate History, and Dr. Sarah Kenderdine won the 2014 CHASS Australia Prize for Distinctive Work with Pure Land, an immersive and interactive 3D digital experience of the Dunhuang Caves, China.

Iain McCalman’s The Reef is the first social, cultural and environmental history of the Great Barrier Reef. He has this to say about his prize:

‘I am deeply honoured to have been awarded the inaugural CHASS prize for my book, The Reef — A Passionate History. As someone who has been long been keenly appreciative of the important role that CHASS plays within the culture and industry of the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences in Australia, it is an especial pleasure. I am also humbled to have been on a short list that includes major books by such fine scholars as Mike Smith and Joan Beaumont.’

Dr. Sarah Kenderdine’s Pure Land virtually recreates Cave 220 at the Dunhuang Caves, one of 492 grottoes resplendent with Buddhist mural paintings over 1000 years old. She notes:

‘The Award celebrates the achievements of a team of 30 people in an interdisciplinary research community of art historians, animators, archaeologists, interaction designers, media artists, and software engineers.

The Award is highly significant because it acknowledges that with today's high fidelity digital imaging and displays, 'digital' is no longer a tool in service of the real. Pure Land offers us a context for powerful experiences of aura.’

This is the first year that the CHASS Prizes have been awarded and Routledge is very proud to have sponsored them. Sarah Blatchford, Taylor & Francis’ Regional Director for Australasia, said:

‘Routledge approached CHASS with a view to participating in their prize programme, by way of support for the Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities community in Australia.’

The Executive Director of CHASS, Emeritus Professor Steven Schwartz, has this to say:

“On behalf of CHASS, I would like to sincerely thank Routledge for their generous support of these Prizes, and of the humanities, arts and social sciences in general. We are very grateful for their vote of confidence in our mission to recognise and reward achievements in the humanities, arts and social sciences in Australia.”

Each prize, worth $3500, is part of the CHASS Australia Prizes program, which aims to draw international attention to Australia’s achievements in the humanities, arts and social sciences. Routledge are delighted to have had the opportunity to participate in the CHASS prize programme and sends warmest congratulations to the winners.


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About Taylor & Francis Group
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Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:
Jenny Ellis, Communications Officer
Email: Jennifer.Ellis@tandf.co.uk
About CHASS:
Established in 2004, the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) promotes and provides advocacy services for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences in Australia. It serves as a coordinating forum for teachers, researchers, professionals and practitioners in the sector. Supporting more than 85 member organisations in their relationships with policy makers and the broader community, CHASS is an important network for knowledge and skills. It provides a strong voice to the sector and helps members to contribute to public debate through programs for knowledge exchange and media awareness.
For more information, please visit www.chass.org.au or call (03) 9925 3935.



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CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2013 - NATIONAL FORUM DISCUSSES THE CONCEPT OF CIVILITY AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR AUSTRALIAN LIVES
CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2013 - NATIONAL FORUM DISCUSSES THE CONCEPT OF CIVILITY AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR AUSTRALIAN LIVES
CHASS National Forum 2013 ‘Civility in Australia’

This report is being submitted in accordance with Schedule 2 (3. Milestones) of the Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIICCSRTE) Funding Agreement with the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) for the 2013 CHASS National Forum.

Day and date of the event: Thursday, 20 June 2013

Venue: Parliament House, ACT

Theme: Civility in Australia

The CHASS National Forum 2013 ‘Civility in Australia’ aims to bring together representatives from the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) sectors. It will provide an opportunity for researchers, parliamentarians, policy makers and practitioners to interact with one another around the issue of civility, and debate the broader implications for Australian society and beyond.

Registration fee for the one-day event is $185, including all catering costs.

Provisional Program
The provisional program includes five keynote addresses, three plenary sessions and one roundtable discussion.

Plenary sessions

Format: Each plenary session is being planned for the duration of 1 hour and 20 minutes. It will include presentations by four panellists, followed by a facilitated audience interaction.

Themes for the planned plenary sessions are:
• Civility and Democracy
• Civility and the Arts
• The Borders of Civility
• Roundtable: Soft Power and Public Diplomacy

The halo of human flourishing

CHASS National Forum 2013_handbook

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CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2012 - GREAT THINKERS TO EXPLORE THE BIG ISSUES FOR HUMANITY
CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2012 - GREAT THINKERS TO EXPLORE THE BIG ISSUES FOR HUMANITY
MEDIA RELEASE
Tuesday 18 September 2012

Great thinkers to explore the big issues for humanity


Leading commentators, academics, strategists, politicians and journalists from Australia and overseas will be gathering in Canberra next week to explore and debate the big issues in diverse areas including the arts, technology, science, policy making and national identity.

The Inaugural CHASS (Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences) Forum — to be held at the University of Canberra on Tuesday 25 and Wednesday 26 September 2012 — will focus on the impact that rapidly changing technology and scientific research are having on the lives of Australians.

“There’s no doubt that times are changing rapidly, and the impact of this change is being felt far and wide and in a variety of areas, from the arts through to education,” said CHASS President, Professor Sue Willis.

“It’s vital to ensure that the human element is not forgotten in amongst these challenges and opportunities. This forum puts this very issue into the spotlight, and represents a unique opportunity to learn from and engage with great minds on a variety of topics.”

“The forum will reveal the latest thinking about how the human dimension is integrating with the changes happening across technology, science and society in general. These are issues of national and global significance, and we’re looking forward to some robust discussions,” continued Professor Willis.

Issues to be addressed include:
  • How do we resolve the tension between technological development and sustainability?
  • Australia in the Asian Century: is our sense of importance in the region overinflated?
  • Is technology removing the roadblocks to science, arts and business working together, or creating new obstacles?
  • How can public policy makers and knowledge producers work more effectively together, particularly when comes to policy on issues such as climate change?

The forum boasts a who’s who of national and international social commentators and industry experts, including Joe Hildebrand (journalist and public commentator), Waleed Aly (broadcaster, author and academic), Lars Klüver (Director - Danish Board of Technology) and Harsh Shrivastava (Consultant – Planning Commission, India).

“We look forward to bringing together diverse areas of knowledge to identify common themes and issues, as well as showcasing the achievements and advances in the humanities, arts and social sciences sector,” Professor Willis concluded.

For more information and online registrations go to: http://www.conferenceco.com.au/chass.

For more information, interviews or to attend the forum as media please contact Fleur Charlton, Threesides on 02 6249 1117, 0418 264 485 or fleur.charlton@threesides.com.au


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CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2012 - INAUGURAL FORUM HIGHLIGHTS THE HUMAN DIMENSION
CHASS NATIONAL FORUM 2012 - INAUGURAL FORUM HIGHLIGHTS THE HUMAN DIMENSION
MEDIA ALERT
Wednesday 5 September

2012 Inaugural forum highlights the Human Dimension


The impact of technology and science on the lives of Australians will be in the spotlight at the Inaugural CHASS (Council for Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences) Forum to be held at the University of Canberra on 24-26 September 2012.

“With rapidly developing technologies and scientific research changing the way we live our everyday lives, it’s vital to support and invest in our knowledge of the human experience,” said CHASS President, Professor Sue Willis.

“This exciting forum is an opportunity to learn from and engage with the latest thinking from Australian and international experts about the human dimension and how it integrates with technology, science, arts and society. From ‘what makes us human?’ to ‘who decides the public good?’, the forum addresses big questions on issues of national and global significance,” she said.

Highlights of the forum include:

  • Keynote international speaker Lars Klüver (Director- Danish Board of Technology), who will address the human and social dimension of technology and innovation;
  • Keynote international speaker Harsh Shrivastava (Consultant – Planning Commission, India), who will highlight the role of humanities, arts, and social sciences in better policymaking;
  • A session on Australia in the Asian Century, which will address issues of our national identity relationships with broader Asia;
  • An examination of what makes us human and the merging of technology and the arts; and
  • A session on academic research and its integration with public policy, particularly when it comes to controversial issues such as climate change.

A who’s who of social commentators and industry experts will be speaking at the forum, including Joe Hildebrand (journalist and public commentator), Waleed Aly (broadcaster, author and academic) and Dr Marcus Hutter (Professor for Artificial Intelligence, ANU).


“We look forward to bringing together these diverse areas of knowledge to identify common themes and achievements and advances made by these increasingly important ” Professor Willis concluded.

EVENT INFORMATION FOR YOUR DIARY/CALENDAR AND EVENTS PAGES:


issues for public advocacy, as well as showcasing the
disciplines and practices,
What: Where: When: Cost: Web:
The Human Dimension - Inaugural CHASS National Forum University of Canberra
24-26 September 2012
Varies – see website for details http://www.conferenceco.com.au/chass/Index.html
For more information, interviews or to attend the forum as media please contact Fleur Charlton, Threesides on 02 6249 1117, 0418 264 485 or fleur.charlton@threesides.com.au

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CHASS WELCOMES NEW GILLARD MINISTRY
CHASS WELCOMES NEW GILLARD MINISTRY
13 December 2011

The Council of the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences President, Professor Sue Willis welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement of changes to the Ministry and Cabinet.

“The decision to re-integrate science and research with higher education under an expanded Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education is particularly welcomed.” Professor Willis said.

CHASS notes the Prime Minister has identified many challenges ahead for Australia with the transition to a clean energy future, tackling new technologies and addressing social policy reforms over the next few years.

“This is where the humanities, arts and social sciences can assist by providing the interface between the government, professionals and consumers on issues that affect society.” Professor Willis said.

CHASS is a well respected organisation for the provision of knowledge exchange and information sharing including dissemination of evidence-based research and data through its network with universities, faculties, arts organisations and leading research institutions.

CHASS has the capability through its network to engage with government and looks forward to working constructively with Ministers Evans and Combet.

Contact:

Ms Angela Magarry
Executive Director
T: +61 2 6201 2740
E: director@chass.org.au



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IDENTIFYING PRIORITIES FOR A CULTURAL POLICY FOR AUSTRALIA
IDENTIFYING PRIORITIES FOR A CULTURAL POLICY FOR AUSTRALIA
28 July 2011

A draft National Cultural Policy framework will be released by the Federal Government this month outlining reforms to Australia’s commitment to the arts, its creative industries and the broader areas of cultural life and value in innovation and heritage and social cohesion.

A conference to be held on Tuesday 2 August, at the University of Western Sydney’s historic Female Orphan School will provide a unique opportunity for researchers in the humanities, arts and social sciences to put their case to politicians and policy makers on the key priorities for a National Cultural Policy.

“CHASS will bring together its membership to work with government to identify existing and potential case studies of where and how cultural policy meets practice.” Professor Sue Willis, President of CHASS said.

A keynote address will be provided by Senator the Hon. Kate Lundy on the government’s vision for Australian culture and broad policy objectives covering heritage, innovation, creation and expression.

For more information contact:

Media: Angela Magarry, 0437 227 422



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CHASS AND ASSA WELCOME IMPROVEMENTS TO THE ERA RANKINGS
CHASS AND ASSA WELCOME IMPROVEMENTS TO THE ERA RANKINGS
02 June 2011

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences and Academy of Social Sciences in Australia welcomes the government’s decision to drop prescriptive journal rankings in the ERA assessment exercise.

The announcements by Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Minister Senator Kim Carr, and Australian Research Council CEO Professor Margaret Sheil to jointly withdraw support for the problematic ranking of journals for the purposes of assessing research contributions of universities and their scholars were welcomed.

“This action clears the way for Australian political scientists, legal scholars, economists, demographers and regional studies experts in the social sciences to continue to employ their skills in the interest of Australia in its regional and world context” Dr Beaton said.

The ranking of publication outlets based on international prestige had threatened to drive productive researchers away from an Australian research focus in favour of research that would be of interest to countries, or regions, where the highest ranked publication outlets are found and would not be in the interest of Australia.

The announcements will “now strengthen the incentives for publishers to provide the forums where Australian scholars can attend to the crucial debates regarding immigration and population, taxation and public good, education and health, and the host of other issues that are of national importance”, Ms Magarry said.

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences and the Academy of the Social Sciences are appreciative of the consultative process by which government arrived at its decision, and looks forward to further opportunities to assist government in the Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) assessment exercise.

Contact for information:

Dr John Beaton
Executive Director
Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia
Phone: +61 2 6249 1788
Mobile: 0438 451 944

Ms Angela Magarry
Executive Director
Phone: +61 2 6201 2740
Mobile: 0437 227 422

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2011-2012 FEDERAL BUDGET
2011-2012 FEDERAL BUDGET
Tuesday 10 May 2011

CHASS welcomes funding for national science engagement strategy.

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) welcomes government funding to implement the Inspiring Australia science engagement strategy.

The Council’s President Professor Sue Willis, said Inspiring Australia will engage all Australians with science by building links between policy makers, industry and the academic and research and community institutions.

“Importantly, the government has recognised the role of the humanities, arts and social sciences in this strategy.” Professor Willis said.

Australia needs these links to realise the opportunities before it and to develop its talent.

CHASS is an important network for knowledge and skills and as part of Inspiring Australia will convene a national forum on science and society.

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences supports more than 90 member organisations in their relationships with policy makers and the broader community. Providing a strong voice, the Council helps members to contribute to public debate through programs for knowledge exchange and media awareness.

For more information contact:

Ms Angela Magarry
Executive Director
+61 2 6201 2740




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CHASS WELCOMES NEW CHIEF SCIENTIST - PROFESSOR IAN CHUBB
CHASS WELCOMES NEW CHIEF SCIENTIST - PROFESSOR IAN CHUBB
19 April 2011

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences President Professor Sue Willis today welcomed the appointment of Professor Ian Chubb as Chief Scientist for Australia.

“Professor Chubb is an outstanding member of Australia’s higher education and research community and will provide a strong voice within the broader scientific community regarding the issues affecting society, in particular the application of knowledge and scientific thinking to tackle the big challenges Australia faces.” Professor Willis said.

The Council wrote to the Australian Government in March this year to advocate for Australia’s next Chief Scientist to be someone who possesses the skills and expertise to enable collaboration across sectors and innovation between the physical, biological, humanities and social sciences.

‘The Council is greatly looking forward to engaging with Professor Ian Chubb in order to ensure there remains space for multi-disciplinary approaches in how Australia addresses the complex social and scientific problems in our future,’ Professor Willis said.

Established in 2004 the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences promotes and provides advocacy services for the humanities, arts and social sciences sector. The Council serves as a coordinating forum for teachers, researchers, professionals and practitioners in the sector.

For more information contact:

Ms Angela Magarry
Executive Director
+61 2 6201 2740



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ESTABLISHMENT OF NEW US COMMISSION ON THE HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES WELCOMED
ESTABLISHMENT OF NEW US COMMISSION ON THE HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES WELCOMED
1 March 2011

The Presidents of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS) and the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia (ASSA) jointly welcome the recent decision by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences to establish a national Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Professor Barry McGaw, President of ASSA said that “the new Commission will boost education and research in the social sciences. These fields are critical to culture, education and to a nation’s economic prosperity.”

The new national Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences has been established in response to a bipartisan request by Congress for practical action to maintain national excellence in humanities and social scientific scholarship and education, to ensure the preservation of intellectual and economic wellbeing, for a stronger, more vibrant civil society, and for the success of cultural diplomacy in the 21st century. The Commission comprises membership from the humanities, the social sciences, the physical and life sciences, business, law, philanthropy, the arts and the media.

Professor Linda Rosenman, President of CHASS said that “although there has been support for the disciplines of maths and sciences in Australia as a key to our long term economic prosperity, we have not yet embraced the long term importance of the arts and social sciences. Yet, we know that knowledge of history, understanding of cross-cultural communication and an ability to utilise evidence and to think creatively are all qualities critical to a country’s well being and economic prosperity.”

With changes that have occurred over the past decade to student funding arrangements and research funding, including the various reviews underway into relative funding models, it is worthwhile giving consideration to such an innovative model for Australia to ensure support for teaching and research in the humanities and social sciences is maintained.

Contact for Information:

Professor Linda Rosenman
President
Tel: +61 3 9919 4020

Professor Barry McGaw, AO FASSA
President
Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia
Tel: +61 2 6249 1788

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2010 ELECTION AND THE POLICY AGENDA FOR THE NEW TERM OF GOVERNMENT
2010 ELECTION AND THE POLICY AGENDA FOR THE NEW TERM OF GOVERNMENT
The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences Board has flagged four issues for action for the new term of Government and urges candidates and parties contesting the 2010 election to set clear directions for innovation, research and cultural policy.
These issues are:

Further investment in research funding so that success rates for grants can increase in the next phase of developing the national innovation system for productivity growth:
Maintain flow of funds allocated for research infrastructure and indexation of grants announced in Powering Ideas Agenda and the response to the Bradley Review
Investigate new funding for ARC Discovery and Linkage programs and the research workforce strategy
Include innovation based on humanities, arts and social sciences knowledge and methodologies in the research and development tax incentive.
Knowledge Exchange programs to build research dissemination and research communication into the innovation system. The flow of new knowledge is essential in building the new business models and social policy programs for future Australian prosperity. Programs for investigation should include:
Extending and funding research dissemination of Australian Research Council projects
Extension of the national science communications strategy, Inspiring Australia for multidisciplinary and HASS research
Appointment by Government of a chief social researcher to aid in building the links between policy makers and academic and research institutions
Include design as part of research and development to encourage creative and innovative project and businesses.
Commitment to a national cultural policy to encourage new Australian work and support development of Australia’s creative talent, including new models of investment in participation in the arts.
On-line access to the major resources and databases of Australia’s collecting institutions so they become part of the network of research and knowledge for industry and the community.
The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences is a network of more than 85 member organisations ranging from universities to research associations and professional groups drawing on HASS knowledge and skills. The Council helps members to contribute to public debate through programs for knowledge exchange and media awareness.

Contact for Information:
Ms Helen O’Neil
Executive Director
Phone: 0417 230540
director@chass.org.au



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SOCIAL SCIENCES SUPPORT FOR MATHS EDUCATION
SOCIAL SCIENCES SUPPORT FOR MATHS EDUCATION
10 March 2010

Joint media release from The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences and The Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia

The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences today welcomed the Group of Eight’s Review of Education in Mathematics, Data Science and Quantitative Disciplines, and its frank acknowledgement of the problems caused by the fall in mathematics participation at Australian schools and universities.

The report, written for the Group of Eight by Professor Gavin Brown AO FAA, says “the state of the mathematical sciences and related quantitative disciplines in Australia has deteriorated to a dangerous level, and continues to deteriorate.”

The Academy of Social Sciences in Australia also welcomed the report. The Academy supported action to boost the statistical and mathematical literacy in Australia.

CHASS Board member, criminologist and statistician Professor Ross Homel AO FASSA says this review highlights the importance of a strong mathematics education for the social sciences. “It warns of the impact of drastically low levels of engagement with mathematics from primary school through to tertiary level on the quality of future research based upon statistical and quantitative analysis in the social sciences.”

“Mathematical ability is deeply embedded in the statistical and quantitative analysis at the heart of many social science disciplines,” Professor Homel says.

Former Australian Statistician and Chairman of the Policy and Advocacy Committee of the Academy of Social Sciences of Australia, Dennis Trewin AO FASSA, fully supported Professor Homel’s comments and highlighted the need to also inform parents and teachers of the importance of a good grounding in mathematics to a range of career choices, including those related to the social sciences. “Parents and teachers have strong influences on student’s choices,” he said.

Part of any endeavour to get kids interested in maths is to demonstrate its relevancy in the jobs market.

CHASS has suggested that more engagement in communications and training programs in education by, for example, economists, finance sector professionals, demographers, criminologists, sociologists, geographers and designers could raise awareness of the value of mathematics and statistics beyond the traditional science areas including physics and engineering. Professor Homel says Australia faces shortages of statisticians and researchers with skills to model major policy and industry innovation.

The Council believes all levels and parts of the education sector have a responsibility in this. It agrees with the review that primary level teachers must have the essential mathematical knowledge to share with their pupils and the research intensive universities should make “enabling” mathematics courses available at a tertiary level.

“Enabling programs designed for budding social scientists may help the situation in the short term,” Professor Homel says.

“Given that the review reports that demand for mathematics and statistics graduates is predicted to grow by 3.5% per year till 2013, there is no time to lose.”

Contact for Information:
Ms Helen O’Neil
Executive Director
Ph: (02) 6201 2740
director@chass.org.au



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A STRATEGIC BREAKTHROUGH IN BUILDING PUBLIC SUPPORT FOR RESEARCH AND SCIENCE
A STRATEGIC BREAKTHROUGH IN BUILDING PUBLIC SUPPORT FOR RESEARCH AND SCIENCE
A strategic breakthrough in building public support for research and science

9 February 2010


The Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences believes the new science communications strategy, ‘Inspiring Australia’ (released February 8) opens the way for a strong and open relationship between science and society, CHASS President, Professor Linda Rosenman said today.

Professor Rosenman said the strategy was a breakthrough in building effective programs for public engagement and understanding of the potential of new research and discovery to meet challenges before Australia.

“The report recognises the contribution of the humanities, arts and social science disciplines in problem-solving, and notes the social sciences and humanities are critical to the interface between science and society,” she said.

The Chair of the Policy and Advocacy Committee of the Academy for the Social Sciences in Australia, Mr Dennis Trewin, said the Academy should quickly move to take a full and active part in the science communications strategy. Mr Dennis Trewin said his Committee would give priority to those activities where societal and behavioural research is crucial for future productivity growth and social inclusion. Interaction with policy makers and communication of the key findings is an essential element of these activities.

“Social scientists agree that young Australians must be encouraged and inspired to study mathematics and other core sciences so that they can aspire to research and knowledge based careers,” he said.

The Council particularly welcomes Recommendation 7 for an annual Science and Society Forum, and Recommendation 15 for tracking and evaluation of the strategy.

President Rosenman said CHASS was already developing proposals for a national forum in the humanities arts and social sciences, to boost Australia’s research and innovation work. “The forum will provide a platform for transdisciplinary approaches to major issues – and the science communications strategy will allow the Council and its member organisations to ensure it also extends to public engagement.”

Inspiring Australia

CHASS has more than 80 member organisations. It works for greater recognition of people, projects and organisations working in HASS and to help them contribute to Australia.

For further comment: Helen O’Neil, Executive Director, CHASS, (02) 6201 2740

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DELIVERING ON THE INNOVATION AGENDA
DELIVERING ON THE INNOVATION AGENDA
13 May 2009

The Rudd Government has used the 2009 Federal Budget to deliver on its commitment to productivity growth through investment in research and innovation, the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences said today.

The Council’s President, Professor Linda Rosenman, said the 25 per cent boost in spending on innovation including research, together with the major investment in higher education and student support, would provide the foundation on which to build the creative imaginative Australia needed for the 21st century economy.

Professor Rosenman congratulated the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator the Hon Kim Carr, for his commitment to consultation in setting up the new support funds for Sustainable Research Excellence in Universities, the ground breaking Joint Research engagement fund and other new initiatives. She also congratulated the Minister for the introduction of a tax credit system for research and development spending in smaller firms – including the opportunity for small scale businesses in creative industries to make a case for access to the scheme.

Among other initiatives the Council also noted new investment into digitisation of Australia’s cultural collections and a total of $62.3 million new investment in the arts and cultural areas. Round 2 of the Education Investment Fund included two projects based on humanities and the arts at UNSW and Charles Darwin University.

“There is much to be done to make these new policies deliver the knowledge and innovation we know Australia can produce. Researchers, education institutions, businesses and professions in the humanities, arts and social sciences look forward to making their contribution to a prosperous and creative future,” Professor Rosenman said.

For further comment: Helen O’Neil, Executive Director, CHASS, (02) 6201 2740

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RESEARCH THAT DELIVERS. DIRECTLY
RESEARCH THAT DELIVERS. DIRECTLY
16 May 2008

Australia is failing to capitalize on the ability of its researchers in the most fundamental area: their power to solve problems.

A new report – Rigour and relevance – from the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS), calls for a three-prong solution to this issue.

Professor Stuart Cunningham, President of CHASS, said such work aims to solve everyday problems such as transport in our cities; welfare in aboriginal communities; climate change; housing affordability, and healthy lifestyles.

“We need to support a new form of research, one that is strategically-driven, problem oriented and cross-disciplinary in nature,” he said.

“If you want to solve a problem, then the person or organisation with the problem has to be in control. They have to set the issues, ensure the work remains focused, and pay the bills. The organisation with the problem needs to be in the driver’s seat.”

The first recommendation is a new role for Government departments: to develop a research plan so they can identify the big problems in their portfolio.

The capacity of government departments to undertake or commission research was heavily run-down in the last decade, and few have the capacity to conduct research.

The second recommendation will make it easier to assemble cross-disciplinary teams to work on problems. Issues may, for instance, require the combined skills of an historian, an engineer, a lawyer, an economist and a biologist.

“Yet all our systems discourage people to work outside their disciplines. It’s hard to work across university departments, and it’s hard to get funding for projects that span disciplines. We need to break down the silos,” Professor Cunningham said.

The third recommendation concerns a new career path for researchers. Generally researchers are promoted for making discoveries and publishing the results.

“Discovery research is vital, and Australia must continue to invest in new ideas,” Professor Cunningham said. “But we also need to construct a new alternative career path, for researchers who want to apply knowledge to solving problems.”

The report Rigor and relevance is available from 3:00pm Sunday 18 May. Principal author was Dr John Howard, Director Research at CHASS.

Media are invited to the launch of the report at the Lobby Restaurant in Canberra, on Tuesday 20 May at 10 am.

For interview: Dr John H Howard 0403 583 600
For information: Toss Gascoigne 0408 704 442
Executive Director
Council of the Humanties, Arts and Social Sciences
Phone: +61 2 6201 2740
director@chass.org.au



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A SOBER BUDGET, BUT PRESSURE MOUNTING FOR 2009
A SOBER BUDGET, BUT PRESSURE MOUNTING FOR 2009
15 May 2008

This budget has delivered what people expected. It reins in expenditure, while investing for the future.

Good news for the tertiary sector is the creation of the Education Investment Fund (EIF) of $11 billion. Both the interest and capital from this fund will be used to restore crumbling infrastructure in the university system.

This will be supplemented by a special one-off Better Universities Renewal Fund of $500 million. BURF is earmarked for capital expenditure on facilities to support teaching, research and student amenities.

The Government has honoured and funded its pre-election commitments on fellowships and scholarships, doubling the number of postgraduate scholarships available to higher degree research students by 2012

Should some of this additional funding have been used to increase the value of the PhD scholarship? Analysis by CHASS and CAPA show that in 1992 the scholarship was 44% of average weekly earnings, but today it is 34%. This year the scholarship dropped below the Henderson Poverty Line.

The Future Fellowships scheme for top mid-career researchers will offer 1,000 Australian and international mid-career researchers four-year fellowships of up to $140,000 a year, with top-up funding to support infrastructure and equipment.

Much of the action in the tertiary sector is anticipated to occur in the next Budget, in May 2009. By then a series of reviews and inquiries will be complete, and the Government will have all the evidence it needs to frame new policies.

These reviews include the Cutler inquiry into the National Innovation System, the Bradley review of Australian Higher Education, and the House of Representatives inquiry into research training and research workforce issues in Australian universities.

There are already encouraging signs that over time the artificial divide between the humanities, arts and social sciences; and the natural sciences will weaken. As Kevin Rudd said in his closing address to the 2020 Conference on 20 April 2008:

“This false divide between the arts and science, between the arts and industry, between the arts and the economy: we’ve actually got to put that to bed. As if creativity is somehow this thing which only applies to the arts, and innovation is this thing over here which applies uniquely to the sciences, or technology, or to design. This is actually again a false dichotomy: it’s just not like that.

“Our ambition should be to create and to foster a creative imaginative Australia because so much of the economy of the twenty-first century is going to require that central faculty.”

The Arts sector is steady as she goes, with some small but welcome increases (resale royalty rights, funds for young and emerging artists, funding for Screen Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive). This sector may also benefit from the results of the Innovation Review

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EXCELLENCE IN RESEARCH: A CHASS RESPONSE
EXCELLENCE IN RESEARCH: A CHASS RESPONSE
27 February 2008

CHASS welcomes the Government’s announcement yesterday (Tuesday) about Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA), the new system to assess research quality in the university sector.

Professor Stuart Cunningham, President of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (CHASS), said that the Minister has reached beyond sterile debates opposing metrics and qualitative assessment.

“This new approach appears to be committed to a sensible balance between metrics and expert review,” Professor Cunningham said.

He supported the idea of a central role for the Australian Research Council (ARC), describing it as ‘a smart move’.

“The Minister will achieve his objective of a more streamlined approach by using the well-credentialed assessment resources of the ARC,” he said.

Although details of the system have not yet been released, Professor Cunningham expects the process could take two or three years to work through the various discipline clusters.

“As far as our sector is concerned, let’s bring it on for the humanities, arts and social sciences (HASS),” he said. “We don’t want to be at the end of a queue, when some of the initial enthusiasm for reform has dissipated.”

“We’re anxious to avoid unintended consequences.

“Our sector remembers what happened with the initial run at National Research Priorities, when a staggered process that started with the natural sciences somehow didn’t get around to the promised focus on the human and social sciences.”

Professor Cunningham said the diversity of the humanities, arts and social sciences needs to be recognized in the ERA process.

“Some of the HASS disciplines have very well established traditions of research and well-formed measures of quality,” he said. “Other disciplines are still working on those measures.”

He said CHASS looks forward to being actively involved in helping establish the new system, and playing a positive part in a new way of measuring research quality in Australia.

See also: Media release from Senator Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research,

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LABOR ANNOUNCES ITS VISION FOR THE ARTS
LABOR ANNOUNCES ITS VISION FOR THE ARTS
14 September 2007
Peter Garrett AM


Federal Labor today released a comprehensive arts policy framework

New Directions for the Arts represents the most detailed arts policy document released by either side of politics in the lead up to the election, and confirms Labor’s commitment to a vibrant, diverse and well-supported arts sector.

Labor recognises that as the century unfolds creativity will become increasingly essential to our national well-being and prosperity.

For eleven years the Howard Government has marginalised the arts and artists by dampening artistic freedom of expression and failing to properly address the perennial financial sustainability problems that beset many arts companies, organisations and individuals.

A Rudd Labor Government will restore the role of the arts in our national life by cutting the bureaucratic red tape involved in the grant application process, boosting the capacity of Australian students to access arts education and supporting the growing digital industries including film and television.

The key initiatives of Labor’s New Directions for the Arts are:

Resale royalty scheme
Labor will implement a resale royalty scheme for visual artists. This, in particular, will provide additional support for Indigenous artists who have witnessed a boom in the Indigenous art market.

Supporting Australian artists
Labor will establish ArtStart to review the current state of artists’ incomes and develop policies to redress the fact that many artists are poorly remunerated for their work. ArtStart will be developed in consultation with the arts sector and state and local governments.

An independent and transparent Australia Council
Labor will ensure transparent board appointments, simplified funding application processes and a greater voice for practising artists and arts entrepreneurs.

A strong commitment to Indigenous arts
Labor will respond to the Senate Committee Report Indigenous Art – Securing the Future to address the issues of sustainability and unscrupulous conduct

Arts education for all students
Labor will work with the states and territories to improve the current provision of arts and music education in schools. Currently only 23 per cent of state school students have access to music education.

Developing the creative industries
Labor will develop a Strategic Digital Industry Plan, engaging with the digital sector in the areas of IP, government procurement and export and innovation.

Labor is committed to world-class telecommunications infrastructure and will invest up to $4.7 billion to establish the National Broadband Network in partnership with the private sector.

A Rudd Labor Government will recognise the critical contribution of the arts to our identity, community and economy.


Other Statements



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