Case for a Chief Human(ities) Officer

There’s a Senate committee inquiry into “nationhood, national identity and democracy.” The Australian Academy of the Humanities has some ideas

Its submission warns there is declining trust in some core institutions, media, business, government and NGOs but not incultural and collecting institutions and our university system” …  “We would urge the Inquiry to consider ways to harness the collective experience and expertise of these sectors in support of strong and democratic communities.”

The academy points to three core areas where it can assist.

* a socially engaged agenda to make the most of digital transformation for Australia; “a national strategy framework, involving government, business, community, and our cultural institutions, will be necessary for Australia to improve outcomes.”

* “Australia’s diaspora advantage“. “There is a significant opportunity to build on the innovative regional cultural networks and infrastructures that have been established by independent cultural sector and civil society players, including Asian and Pacific diasporas.”

* “Humanising Australia’s future”: “The academy has developed an agenda, an eight-point plan to humanise Australia’s future, for a human-centred approach to policy-making, which requires all government agendas to be informed by ethical, historical, creative and cultural expertise.”

This will require, “incorporating expert advice from evidence-based research into the processes of government.”

And the academy has an idea how – adapting the “extremely effective” chief scientist model (snaps to Dr Finkel says CMM). “The establishment of a similar formal mechanism for providing social and cultural expertise, including Indigenous research and knowledge – in coordination with science-based advice – is necessary.”

Good-o, but what to call the role – Chief Human?


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