CHASS Newsletter #35

Research workforce

The Australian Government’s 2020 Research Workforce Strategy to 2020 will be critical for the humanities, arts and social sciences. We will be relying more on realising the potential of Australia’s human capital, and creative, innovative research is essential for extending knowledge and skills. In the HASS areas the best researchers are often leaders in teaching and learning too.

Leading education researchers and demographers have identified looming shortages in areas from visual arts to social sciences (CHASS Occasional Paper: 6 ). They started the debate on how to encourage talented and able students to tackle higher degree research, and commit to the teaching/research careers essential to creation of innovative research and good learning.

The Government is now working on the strategy with a clear understanding that career pathways into research vary widely across science areas, let alone in education, creative arts or the humanities. The Australian Council of the Deans of Education has done some analysis which shows, given the need to have professional experience in the classroom, and the demands of raising families, the career pathway to a research/teaching position can be 22 years – compared to the traditional eight or 10 year science pathway, where students might go from undergraduate study, straight through to a PhD and post doctoral study. In HASS areas PhD students are juggling university teaching commitments with part time research work – and in many universities HASS has nearly half the PhDs undertaken. Early moves to increase post graduate allowances, and increase the number of scholarships will encourage more students to look at a research career – but multiple strategies will be needed to keep them there. The Government has formed a reference group to advise on the strategy, drawn from industry, universities, the academies and unions and which includes CHASS.

This newsletter is also your notice and warning that registrations for HASS on the Hill closes October 16. Many of you have contacted CHASS to talk about coming to the event – now is the time to go on-line for the formal registration process.

And just one more reason to join the delegates for HASS on the Hill: see The Sydney Nolan Gallipoli Series exhibition at the Australian War Memorial. The AWM connects into the CHASS network through the Council of Australian Museum Directors.

Meanwhile, arts companies around Australia, (in CHASS member the Australian Major Performing Arts Group) are announcing their 2010 seasons. The Brisbane Festival is winding up, and the Melbourne International Arts Festival prepares to launch next week. The Australian Performing Arts Centres Association has announced its Drovers Award for arts touring – naming Bangarra Dance Theatre as Touring Legend of 2009, and giving the Presenter of the year award to the Princess Theatre in Launceston. We are heading into a season of important new Australian work and rich talent.

Helen O’Neil
Executive Director
Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
6 October 2009

HASS on the Hill

Register now
Time is running out!
Registrations close 16 October

HASS on the Hill program

HASS on the Hill is shaping up to be an exciting 2 day event. The Minister for the Arts, the Hon Peter Garrett AM MP has chosen the meaty topic of a national cultural policy to 2020 and is ready to lay out his thoughts on this important issue at the National Press Club address.

Professor Joseph Lo Bianco will chair the roundtable Languages and cultural awareness, and CHASS Vice-President Professor Ross Homel and Professor Trevor Gale will jointly chair the roundtable Social inclusion in education.

The Chief Scientist Professor Penny Sackett will join the Building bridges session, while a member of the Australian Government’s Creative Arts Advisory Group, Dr Julianne Schultz joins the opening session. More Members of Parliament and Senators are confirming their involvement – a reflection on the willingness of Australian political leadership to take on fresh thinking about the best way to meet the challenges before Australia.

Priorities for 2010

CHASS has opened an on-line discussion list so that you can debate what issues will dominate HASS advocacy next year. A list of potential priorities has been posted for comment and debate, with a view to building a rich discussion in the HASS on the Hill session Looking to the Future: Issues for 2010.

Excellence in Research update

CHASS submitted a response to the ERA Indicators Consultation Paper, and thanks member organisations for their feedback to the ERA Indicators discussion paper. This submission is available in the CHASS website.

ERA, overview and implications
Stuart Macintyre
Academy of the Social Sciences

HASS at a glance

Notices for upcoming submissions can be viewed on the CHASS website.

Second Languages and Australian Schooling

Professor Lo Bianco traces the history of language learning in Australia, outlines the findings of research from Australia and overseas and proposes a new rationale for language learning policy.

ASSA public lecture

3 November: Professor John Dryzek will deliver the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia 2009 Cunningham Lecture, Green democracy, global governance
National Curriculum in the Arts

NAAE paper is available for comment and discussion.

ConnectCP online database

ConnectCP is a database of international cultural policy experts.

Commercialisation in the Creative Arts

A workshop on Commercialisation in the Creative Arts will be included in the Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia Annual Conference 2009.