When the chemistry is right

In rapid-time yesterday Stanford U created a 3.30 video featuring its very newly announced Nobel Prize winner for chemistry, Carolyn Bertozzi, talking about her science and life (via Twitter, Stanford University@Stanford).

And great work it is  – makers of tick-the-box uni brand vids take note – leave it the talent.

There’s more in the Mail

In Expert Opinion this morning

Elissa Newall on how 107 HE providers around the world handle first contact from prospective studentsAustralia and New Zealand do it well. New this morning (ep 18) HERE.

And in Features

Jay Cohen (La Trobe U) on using video in on-line learning. “I suspect on-line students, who in all the instances that I am aware of, pay the same price for the on-line version of the subject as those attending the on-campus occurrence, would prefer not to be subjected to “second hand” re-used, rarely captioned or transcribed poor-quality classroom-based recorded video,” he writes. Its Commissioning Editor Sally Kift’s new selection for her celebrated series, Needed now in learning and teaching.

ANU asks staff about ending masks

While the ACT has relaxed Covid restrictions ANU still mandates masks on campus

However it is considering three changes. Ending their use in teaching environs at the end of semester (October 28) and in other settings on October 17. They would continue required in clinical settings.

The university seeks feedback while the National Tertiary Education Union is separately running a survey on management’s proposals.

More money for applied research

The Australian Research Council opens applications for Industry Laureate Fellowships

It’s part of a $215m programme which will run for four (unless it is five – the ARC is not fixed) years and is open to researchers from industry or academia.

The purpose is to “facilitate the development of high-quality and impactful collaborations between university and industry shareholders to solve industry challenges.”

Applicants can be “senior researchers with an exemplary record of research translation” and “senior industry professionals looking to build and transform an emerging industry.”

As previously announced there will be a maximum eight industry laureates (CMM September 1).

It’s part of the government’s applied research push, which looks similar to the previous government’s plan – although without the coalition’s proposed oversight to keep researchers on a commercial track (CMM February 3).

In breaking news

A La Trobe U Mildura manager tweets that a new outdoor light “is fully operational” so the campus name sign is visible at night.

Unis pitch their skills case

University lobbies used the national skills shortage list yesterday to make their case

The National Skills Commission reports on occupations in demand yesterday included trades and professions both. With the government going hard on expanding trade training peak higher education lobbies seized the opportunity to point out that they meet skill needs locally.

“Many industries would not be able to operate without these workers who start their career journey at Australia’s world-class universities,”  Catriona Jackson from Universities Australia said.

According to the Group of Eight’s Vicki Thomson, “the priority list is alarming in that many of the professions where we have a skills shortage were not evident just two years ago – a situation clearly exacerbated by Covid, closed borders and visa settings.”

Smart politics – the pandemic made plain how exposed Australia is to disruptions in supply chains and encouraged the enduring popular belief that Australia should manufacture its own goods and supply its own expertise in services.

As a way of having a seat for universities at new agency Jobs and Skills Australia’s high policy table such arguments are hard to beat. As Ms Thomson put it,

“the creation of JSA is an important step toward to addressing Australia’s workforce and skills shortage and as such is an opportunity to recalibrate our national workforce planning. Doctors are in as short supply as care workers. Engineers are in as short supply as crane operators.  JSA is a worthy vehicle with which to identify what needs to be done and how to alleviate this issue, one which is building to catastrophic in some sectors.”

The SHAPE of things to come

There’s a new lobby for HASS early and midcareer researchers

Its SHAPE, as in “social sciences, humanities and arts for people and environment” and it will advocate for ECMRs, “within and beyond the academy.” Melissa Day, (Uni Queensland) chairs. The SHAPE site is HERE.

Promoting international students to employers


 The International Education Association of Australia has launched a guide for employers on employing international students.

This is good news. The sector has long spruiked the benefits of international students to Australian workplaces but has previously not advised on how to do it.

According to Melanie Duncan, a co-author of the report “current visa settings, the recent extension of post-study work rights and post covid skills shortages are seeing employers re-calibrate their views around employing international students.”

Last week’s launch, in conjunction with the City of Melbourne, attracted over 100 employers, many with questions on visas and eligibility for work.

A major takeout of the initiative is a call to action to employers to rethink eligibility for roles they advertise. Currently, advertising roles that require Australian citizenship or permanent residency is the norm. A shift to including qualified persons with Australian work rights would be a big win.

The success of the launch in Melbourne may lead to a national roadshow.

Dirk Mulder advises education and business clients on trends in international education. He writes regularly for CMM


Appointments, achievements

of the day

 Karu Esselle (UTS) is Engineering Australia’s Professional Engineer of the Year.

At Griffith U, Mark Loon becomes head of the Department of Business Strategy and Innovation. He joins from Northumbria U in the UK. Amanda Daly who was acting at Business Strategy returns to Deputy Dean Leaning and Teaching for the Business School.

The Heart Foundation announces grants

Future Leadership I (three-seven years post PhD): Dorothea Dumuid (Uni SA) Danielle Kamato (Griffith U) Liliana Laranjo (Uni Sydney) Lana McClements (UTS) James McFadyen (Baker HDI) Stephanie Partridge (Uni Sydney) Dean Picone (Uni Tasmania) Pierre Qian (Uni Sydney)

Future Leadership II (seven-ten years post PhD): Kathryn Backhole (Deakin U) Eleni Giannoulatou (Victor Chang Cadiac RI) Shaun Gregory (Monash U) Kathryn Hayward (Uni Melbourne) Xiaowei Wang (Baker HDI)

Future Leadership III (ten to 15 years post PhD): Jodie Ingles (Garvan IMR) Nathan Palpant (Uni Queensland) Peter Psaltis (Uni Adelaide)

The Network of Interdisciplinary and Transdisciplinary Research Organisations announces new leadership appointments. Iain Gordon(ANU) replaces inaugural president Gabriele Bammer (also ANU), Beth Fulton (U Tasmania, Martin Bliemel (UTS) are elected to the executive.

of the week

International society, ACS Photonics announces its 2023 young innovator – Igor Aharonovich (UTS).

Jessica Brinsdon joins the National Tertiary Education Union as comms manager.

David Castle is appointed professor of psychiatry at the newly announce Centre for Mental Health Service Innovation in Tasmania. It’s a partnership between the state government and Uni Tas. He joins from the University of Toronto.

Eucalypts Australia announces the 2023 Dahl Fellowships, for “a project related to eucalypts that is not readily fundable elsewhere.” Winners are palaeocologist and artist Elizabeth EdmondsAlyssa Martino (Uni Sydney PhD researcher on Myrtle rust resistance) and Brett Mifsud (Victorian school teacher) who will record a survey of Tasmania’s giant eucalypts.

Zoe Piper is appointed Dean of Adjuncts at Uni Canberra. She will lead the university’s engagement with adjuncts and professors emeriti.

Kris Ryan is appointed DVC Academic at Uni Queensland. He moves from Monash U, where he is PVC A.

Flora Salim (UNSW) is announced chief investigator at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society.

Jo White starts next month as director of Canberra’s science museum, Questacon. She will move from the Royal Botanical Garden, in Sydney.

Katherine Woodthorpe is elected president of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, starting January. She succeeds Hugh Bradlow. Dr Woodthorpe is professional director.

Lisa Zamberlan is acting PVC International at UNSW. She covers during recruitment of the new DVC (unless it ends up a VP) Global position.