A partnership with Siemens creates a model for manufacturing


Uni Newcastle wants its name in bigger lights

Greening campuses: shortlists for environmental awards announced


and: Uni SA honours its achievers


plus: UTas union rejects management plan for two types of academics


The rating the world watches

Full coverage of the new ARWU ranking in CMM tomorrow

The MBA is dead. Long live the MBA!

Guy Ford thinks the standard MBA has had it, but fortunately his University of Sydney just happens to have a new one in the works

The problem with traditional MBAs, Professor Ford says is they offer; “offer little more than modularised doses of business knowledge covering topics such as accounting, economics, management and statistics, to name a few.” But because business leaders need to deal with “ambiguity and uncertainty” “a new UniSyd MBA programme “focuses on developing skills around creativity, critical analysis and a systems approach to problem solving. We also work to develop the personal and interpersonal skills needed to lead effectively.” Or it will, the new FT course starts in a year.

Designing next generation qualifications

Swinburne and Siemens announce a partnership to manufacture the future

Industrial giant Siemens will grant $135m in manufacturing software to Swinburne University’s factory of the future. The new facility will provide students, from apprentice to PhD level, with hands-on access to the digital resources to simulate manufacturing processes from creating prototypes to conceptualising production processes. Swinburne students will have access to the resources used by advanced auto makers, energy companies and the US Navy.

The fully digitalised Swinburnefactory of the future’ “will set an Industry 4.0 benchmark and provide an environment for workforce transformation that is in line with the most advanced economies in the world,” says Swinburne DVCR Aleksandar Subic.

According to Siemens,digital manufacturing is a key point of “industry 4.0”? as it connects advanced software tools to various shop floor applications and equipment, enabling the exchange of product-related information between design and manufacturing groups. This means faster time to bring product ideas to life, more complex and flexible manufacturing, cost savings, improved quality and ultimately greater competitiveness.”

This is a big win for Swinburne, deepening and strengthening its strategy of training and teaching applied skills. Back in 2015 the university restructured its work integrated learning programme to give students hands-on experience – the Siemens partnership goes beyond anything on offer then.

Indecipherable code

Here’s a season first – a footie game with neither team sponsored by an Australian university

The US college football season kicks-off in Sydney Sunday week, when Stanford plays Rice U. Apparently, there will be; “mascots, cheerleaders, marching bands and American themed food options.” At least there is no mention of US not-beer.

Union escalates bargaining dispute at UTas

Union members at the University of Tasmania are being urged to vote for industrial action

The National Tertiary Education union says it is time to take management on, that after a year of enterprise bargaining negotiations with management are “at a critical point.” The local branch of the union’s demands are pretty much out of the national playbook; “a reasonable salary outcome,” improved access to superannuation for fixed term staff and career paths for casual academics. But there is one issue born of Vice Chancellor Peter Rathjen’s plan to diversify the UTas teaching base – management wants a separate agreement for staff teaching associate degrees, VET and pathway programmes. “No adequate explanation has been offered as to why these staff need to be treated differently,” the union argues. Apart, perhaps, from their being more productive as teachers if the university does not have to allow them time for research.

Less expensive ASQA

ASQA will reduce most user fees as it moves to partial cost recovery

The Australian Skills Quality Authority was established to operate on full cost recovery, which was changed to partial payment by training providers, to begin on January 1. This seems sensible, given industry response to ASQA’s imposts back in 20124, when then training minister Ian Macfarlane ruled out any increases “for the foreseeable future,” (CMM June 26 2014).

The proposed new charges are  here and are up for industry comment to September 12.

Whatever the operational need for speed it is a shame that fee setting could not have waited on the Braithwaite review of ASQA’s legislative functions, which is due by year end.

UNI SA honours its own

Four academics become professor emeritus

Senior staff will be honoured at University of South Australia graduations this week. David Corkindale was a founder of the vastly influential Ehrenberg Bass Institute for Marketing Science. Kerin O’Dea is honoured, in part for her work on diet and chronic disease among Indigenous Australians. Roger Harris has researched vocational education for 40 years. Claire Woods founded the university’s narratives of war research group.

Retired HR chief Ruth Blenkiron become a Fellow of the university, in tribute to her creation of a centralised recruitment function

More marketers

The University of Newcastle wants to be a bigger brand

In June Caroline McMillen signalled she wanted to see the University of Newcastle’s name up in larger lights. “We have underinvested in marketing capacity and capability and we need to have a better understanding of our markets and strategies for student recruitment,” (CMM June 5) she told staff. And now she has delivered, with 9.5 equivalent full time marketing jobs being added to the strength. Half of them are senior HEW Ten level.

Not everybody is pleased. Some staff fear a bunch of new managers coming up with ideas that the rank and file will be too few to implement. Others warn the new centralised structure will strip expertise from faculties.

Deakin scholar funded

Deakin U postgraduate Celeste Thorn has a field scholarship from the Menzies Centre at King’s College London. She will use it for research in UK and European archives and for field trips to the sites of the Warsaw Ghetto and the Treblinka Nazi death camp.

Market failure

Small business does not know who to ask, or trust, for training staff

Chandra Shah sets out the circumstances that shape small business attitudes to training in a new study for the estimable National Centre for Vocational Education and Training.

“One of the problems faced by small firms is easy access to reliable information on the increasingly complex training market. Cash and time-poor small firms seem to find navigating the training market difficult. This points to a need for good and reliable training market information from a third party, information with a focus only on the national interest,” he writes. Good-oh, but which third party?

Greening the campuses

Shortlists for environmentally friendly uni developments are announced

The ANZ universities group that sponsors the Green Gown awards for environmental sustainability on campus has announced the 2017 short lists. Contenders for major awards include;

Built environment: University of Tasmania and Victoria University of Wellington

Creating impact: Federation University, University of Adelaide, University of the Sunshine Coast, UNSW

Community: James Cook University, La Trobe University, University of Adelaide, University of Melbourne, University of Tasmania

Continuous improvement: Griffith University, La Trobe University, University of Southern Queensland

Facilities and services: Deakin University, Macquarie University, RMIT University, University of Adelaide

Learning, teaching and skills: Griffith University, James Cook University, RMIT University, University of Tasmania

Student engagement: Monash University, University of Adelaide, University of Auckland, University of Melbourne


Dolt of the day: Is CMM. In yesterday’s issue CMM missed University of Queensland virologist Kirsty Short who is a Qld Young Tall Poppy.