$9m shortfall leads to Griffith U proposing science schools merge

Griffith University plans to restructure its science schools to address changing student demand and deal with a $9m loss on taught load this year.

Student expectation and behaviour has been changing. Demand for increased study flexibility is growing, driven by the need for ‘any time any place’ interdisciplinary education and the merging of study and paid work. The question is how best to equip graduates for the challenging employment environment ahead, while at the same time maintaining a competitive research base,” PVC Sciences Andrew Smith, tells staff in a restructure proposal.

The university also needs to address resource distribution with two science schools now maintaining separate infrastructure groups and maths also taught by two teams.

The university proposes reducing STEM schools from four to three by merging the schools of environment and natural sciences into a new school of environment and science. Staff in architecture and aviation would join an expanded school of engineering and built environment and there will be a new data sciences discipline group in ICT.

There is no word on academic job cuts although Professor Smith mentions voluntary redundancies in the first instance. A university wide admin review is expected next year which would cover changes to administration plus science and technical work. It follows a VR round last year.

Staff have until October 12 to comment.