The Go8 offers a trusted network through which ideas and expertise are shared.
Various committees of Go8 directors meet regularly but separately to share information and ideas and to work jointly on projects (e.g. benchmarking).
Increasingly there are important points of interaction among the work of different groups. Consequently there is a need for shared understandings, agreed definitions and improved communication across the groups.
Go8 Backgrounder 6: Mission-based funding compacts with public universities explores the possible uses of compacts in government financing of university activities, examines their potential costs and benefits, and outlines principles for their design and implementation.
Governments in many countries exert pressures on universities to be more accountable for the results they manage to achieve with the resources available to them. A recently added twist, ironically within the context of falling government investment and rising student demand, is that governments are intruding into areas which have long been regarded as prerogatives of autonomous universities.
The Australian National University and the University of Melbourne, in conjunction with the Group of Eight hosted a two day symposium on university costs and compacts in July 2008. Australian and international experts addressed key questions around: identifying the actual costs of teaching and research; and the expectations of government in return for funding the true costs of university activities.