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.
There is an ongoing discussion in Australia on the need to improve the linkages between business and universities. Not surprisingly, this issue tends to receive more attention as financial and budgetary conditions tighten and as governments look for more immediate and visible returns on their investments. This is because capturing the commercial benefits of university research will often depend on business.
The Bradley Review’s recommendation of a demand-driven system of funding university places was made without explicit reference to labour market demand for particular skills and qualifications. It has been implemented without much regard for student demand by field of education. It is clear that the Government underestimated both students’ and universities’ reaction to the opening up of the system. For this reason, initial projections of the cost of a demand-driven system were understated.
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:
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 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:
• Key contacts in the Department of Education – their roles and responsibilities
• New Go8 Policy Notes – the impact of the demand-driven system
• Senate inquiry into innovation
• Internships for Science without Borders (SWB) students at Monash University
• Applications for the Go8-DAAD cooperation scheme 2015/2016 open on 7 April
• U15 of Canada signs Hefei Statement
• Research with Impact
• Calendar of Events