The second Group of Eight (Go8) Infrastructure Survey was undertaken in 2009. It provided an update for some of the information collected in the 2007 Go8 Infrastructure Survey (Go8 Infrastructure Condition Survey 2007), including the assessed quality, value and condition of buildings and use of space. It also collated data related to aspects of the estate not previously explored, including student accommodation, energy and other environmental issues and initiatives.
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.
The Group of Eight aims to be:
an authoritative source of policy advice and analysis on higher education and university research;
proactive in setting the policy agenda;
responsive to changes in the policy environment.
Business and universities are different but complementary parts of the national innovation system and the effectiveness of the system depends on them working together. Linkages require reciprocity and both sectors need to play a role in initiating and strengthening them; neither sector can act in isolation from the other and all parties need to respond to the needs and concerns of the others.
This is the third infrastructure survey conducted by the Go8, focusing on the state of the buildings and infrastructure at the Go8 universities. This most recent survey collated data relating to aspects of the estate not previously explored, including leasing arrangements, space utilisation, parking, and transportation modes.
The Group of Eight supports a move to measure the real socioeconomic characteristics and background of students by exploring additional, relevant, directly measured variables (subject to validation of quality), rather than relying on the present use of imputed values, based on postcode areas. Group of Eight encourages the development of improved data sets, to better understand the interaction of factors which lead to success in higher education, and to support data-based evaluation of policy initiatives and programs.
The Go8's submission to the Federal Government's Review of the National Innovation System includes over 20 recommendations designed to ensure that Australia's research and research training systems are capable of underpinning a dynamic economy and society. The Go8 submission stresses the importance of basic research and business / community / university collaboration to innovation, but suggests that arguably the most important function of universities is the cultivation of talent in an environment that values intellectual curiosity. Key recommendations of the Go8's submission include:
The Go8 offers a trusted network through which ideas and expertise are shared. Various committees of Go8 directors meet regularly to share information and ideas and to work jointly on projects.
The first Go8 Directors' event, held in Melbourne in May 2009, brought together the various director groups (commercialisation, human resources, international, research, data sharing and more) with a view to developing understanding, increasing operating efficiency and improving collaboration across the Go8 network.
Table of contents:
Government funding decisions - what will they mean for the sector;
Promoting China as a study destination;
New Go8 publications ('The role and importance of research intensive universities' and 'Where should governments invest their research funding?');