Late on the update

The estimable National Centre for Vocational Education Research advises new keywords for searches of the VOCED Plus database

They are – “automation,” “digitilisation,” “green economy,”  and “labour market information.” NCVER says keywords are added, “from time to time, to cover new and emerging topics.” If “automation” and digitilisation” are new to the list it must have been a while since it was updated – perhaps there was a wait on a new ribbon for the NCVER typewriter.

There’s more in the Mail

In Features this morning

Merlin Crossley (UNSW) on knowing there will always be unknowns and why it’s better than believing anybody has all the answers.

plus Tim Winkler (Tim Winkler) worries uni websites look like they did in 2019 – which is a big opportunity lost.

with Frank Larkins (Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education),who sets out 2019-21 FTE job losses for casuals and total staff at hardest-hit institutions.

and Shannon Johnston and Michelle Picard (Murdoch U) make the case for embedding teaching and learning scholarship in work done everyday. This week’ selection by Commissioning Editor Sally Kift for her series, Needed now in teaching and learning.

Performance art

Lovers of Noh Theatre don’t get a lot to watch but they can always enjoy the rituals of enterprise bargaining

The Fair Work Commission has approved a ballot of Uni Sydney staff on taking protected industrial action as part of enterprise bargaining.

Proposals range from a one-hour stop work to an indefinite stoppage. The campus branch of the National Tertiary Education Union applied for the ballot, which university management does not oppose. The union nominates overwork, gender affirmation leave and “a fair pay rise” as among the important issues.

A win for research open access

The Brits have a deal with Elsevier, “for a significant reduction” on current institutional spends 

JISC (the Joint Information Systems Committee as was), which handles data and digital content for UK HE has agreed on terms with for-profit journal giant Elsevier. It appears UK research will now be free to read from publication in Elsevier journals. What this means for article processing charges and university subscription packages is not clear in the announcement CMM could access. However, the fundamental is that “journal subscription budgets (are) converted to pay for a suite of open access publishing services.”

This appears broadly in-line with a range of agreements reached with minor through major publishers by the Council of Australian University Librarians, which make content by researchers at member universities free to read without publishing charges (CMM January 21 2022).

And it creates a question – if Elsevier will do a deal in the UK, will it do one here?

TEQSA to unis: comply with obligations to students

The regulator is “concerned” that  university students continue to experience sexual assault/harassment and that many “are unaware” of how to access support and make complaints

The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency responded yesterday to Wednesday’s new survey of sexual assault and harassment at all Universities Australia members.

The regulator also reminds providers they are required to have “appropriate policies and procedures” to prevent and respond to “allegations, reports or incidences of sexual assault or sexual harassment involving their students.” And it states, it will “continue to engage with the sector to ensure compliance” with provider requirements on student wellbeing and  handling complaints.

The agency does not sound as positive as it did in 2019, when it found almost all universities had policies, on sexual assault and harassment and provided training on dealing with cases. Australian universities were “moving in a positive direction”  TEQSA reported then (CMM January 29 2019).


CRC Projects Round 12 announced

CRC Ps are short-term, industry-researcher partnerships. Projects and lead/research organisation partners in funding announced last night are

* Cannabinoiod pharmaceuticals ( Cannapacifc, CSIRO, UNSW, Uni Newcastle)

* Green hydrogen (Endua, CSIRO)

* Data innovation triaging at-risk Australians (Vlepis, RMIT, UTS, NSW Smart Sensing Network)

* Betavoltaic battery manufacturing (Phosenergy, Uni SA, UWA, Uni Adelaide)

* Tyre waste for polymer composites (Bioplant, RMIT, Uni Melbourne)

* Carbon-free ammonia manufacture (Jupiter Ionics, Monash U)

* Diagnostic-imaging for cancer surgery (Oncores Medical, UWA)

* mRNA manufacturing for clinical trials (Bridgewest Australia, Uni Adelaide)

* Intra-aortic balloon heart assist device: (QHeart Medical, Monash U, Uni Queensland)

* mRNA vaccine for bacterial infection: (Denteric, CSL, Uni Melbourne)

* Reusable hypersonic platform: (Hypersonic Launch Systems, Uni Southern Queensland)

* Quantum-tech in space manufacturing (Q-CTRL, ANU)

* Affordable sodium borohydride as hydrogen carrier (Boron Molecular, UTS)

No room of their own for union at USC

Universities generally give unions an office on campus but no longer , the National Tertiary Education Union says, at Uni Sunshine Coast

According to the NTEU, management has terminated the lease on space at the Sippy Downs campus. The union says management’s reason is that there is a “pressing need for additional academic and administration offices.”  However Sippy Downers say there were eight empty offices near what was the union space last week.

CMM asked the university but was told, “USC is declining to comment on this.”

Dolt of the day

Is CMM who mis-typed ASQA CEO Saxon Rice as “Price” in yesterday’s email issue.

Appointments, achievements

of the day

 Craig Mutton starts next week as Uni Canberra’s inaugural Chief Digital Officer. He moves from ED strategy at the Victorian Environmental Protection Agency.

Michael Petraglia is the new director of the Australian Research Centre for Human Evolution at Griffith U. He joins from the Max Planck Institute in Jena.

 Marina Reeves is named academic leader of the year at Uni Queensland med faculty awards

The Royal Society of NSW will confirm new fellows, next month, including * Igor Aharonovich (UTS) * Clive Baldock (Western Sydney U) * Anthony Cunningham (Uni Sydney) * Roy Green (UTS) * Renée Leon (Charles Sturt U) * Tuan van Nguyen (UNSW and UTS) * James Renwick (ANU) * Shawn Ross (Macquarie U)

Ministers in the new South Australian government include, Blair Boyer (education, training and skills). Deputy premier Susan Close is minister for (among other things) industry, innovation and science and defence and space industries.

of the week

Rick Bennett becomes DVC of British University of Vietnam (teaching University of London and Staffordshire University programmes). He moves from ED Academic and Students at RMIT Vietnam.

Viv Ellis (Monash U) is appointed to the board of the Victorian Government’s Vic Academy of Teaching and School Leadership.

Paul Fitzgerald is the inaugural director of ANU’s School of Medicine and Psychology. He moves from Monash U. The school was created in last year’s restructure of the College of Health and Medicine (CMM May 14 2021).

Robert Fitzgerald is inaugural head of UNSW Canberra’s School of Professional Studies. He moves from PVC for education strategy at Charles Darwin U.

Jennifer Howell becomes PVC Global Engagement at UWA next month. She moves from Curtin University.

Mark von Itzstein (Griffith U) wins the Antonín Holý award for innovation from the International Society for Antiviral Research.

Alexander Kalloniatis  (Defence Science and Technology) receives the  Defence Minister’s 2021 Award for science/tech achievement. He works on R&D for command and control.

Elgene Lim (Garvan IMR and UNSW) receives the Cancer Council of NSW’s Sally Crossing Award for breast cancer research.

John Molony becomes PVC and VP International at Deakin U. He takes over as VP from Gary Smith, who retired last year.

Kathryn North (Murdoch Children’s Research Institute) is the inaugural chair of the new federally funded Genomics Australia.

Nicholas Tally is stepping down as editor in chief of the Medical Journal of Australia but will stay on until a replacement is in-place