Thursday, September 22, 2011

Australian National University New Strategic Plan

The Australian National University this morning released its ANU by 2020 Strategic Plan. The plan is available on the web and also in a 30 Page PDF Version (1 Mbyte).

The plan includes nineteen ambitious targets, for performance in research, education and policy. Unlike the vague aspirational statements in many strategic plans, these are mostly numeric performance measures, most of which are to be met by 2015. Presumably the ANU will be publishing its performance against all these measures at least annually.

While ANU will continue to emphasize its role in research, the areas of education and contributions to public policy, are also addressed.

Sections of the ANU by 2020 Strategic PlanThe plan includes performance measures for the university in three areas: Research, Education and Policy:

Research Performance Measures for ANU:
  1. The vast majority of academic staff at ANU will be highly research-active.
  2. By 2015, 85 per cent of academic staff will be in four digit field of research code areas (discipline areas) rated ERA 4 or 5. This will rise to 90 per cent by 2020. (compared to 80 per cent in 2010).
  3. ANU will enhance both the quantity and percentage of publications in the most highly ranked outlets, typical of the publication profile of ERA groups ranked at level 5.
  4. By 2015, at least 55 per cent of ANU academic staff1 will be an investigator (in any capacity) on at least one current Category 1 research grant. This percentage will rise to 60 per cent by 2020 (compared to approx 52 per cent in 2010).
  5. By 2015, at least 46 per cent of ANU academic staff1 will be the first named investigator on at least one current Category 1 research grant. This will rise to 50 per cent by 2020 (compared to approx 43 per cent in 2010).
  6. By 2015, at least 27 per cent of ANU academic staff1 will be first named investigator on at least one current Category 2, 3 or 4 research grant or consultancy. This will rise to 35 per cent by 2020 (compared to approx 23 per cent in 2010).
  7. ANU will remain the top-ranked Australian university on a per capita basis in the Shanghai Jiaotong and QS rankings.
  8. By 2015, the number of HDR students supervised per FTE member of academic staff will rise to 1.68, increasing to 1.75 by 2020 (compared to 1.64 in 2010).

1 For these purposes Academic staff at Levels C and above are considered

Education Performance Measures for ANU:
    1. ANU will perform above the Go8 average in national course and university surveys (Course Experience Questionnaire (CEQ), or successor, survey results averaged across the Good Teaching, Overall Satisfaction and Generic Skills scales).
    2. ANU will maintain the percentage of students who undertake further postgraduate study above the Go8 average.
    3. ANU will maintain employment rates of graduates, as measured by the Graduate Destination Survey above the Go8 average.
    4. ANU will aim to continually increase the number of national teaching awards won by staff.
      By 2015, 65 per cent of courses offered will obtain an agreement rate of over 80 per cent for Overall Satisfaction in the SELT survey (for courses with over 5 responses), rising to 70 per cent by 2020 (compared to 60 per cent of courses in 2010).
    5. By 2015, all new staff appointed with a teaching role (including HDR supervision), who do not have prior teaching experience will complete the Foundations of Teaching & Learning course within 12 months of commencement.
Policy Performance Measures for ANU:
  1. ANU will achieve an ERA ranking of 5 in the majority of the discipline areas which, by their nature, have strong public policy relevance (e.g. economics, environment, politics, health etc).
  2. ANU will continue to expand high-quality postgraduate coursework programs in public policy with a 4 per cent annual increase in enrolments.
  3. By 2020, ANU will be seen unequivocally as the national leader in contributions to public policy analysis and formulation.
  4. ANU will continue to grow HDR enrolments on public policy related topics
  5. ANU will regularly subject its public policy position to international review. These reviews will show a continued increase in the quantity and impact of our public policy activity.
  6. The number of ANU staff acting in formal advisory positions to government will increase over the period to 2020.

ps: This is just my take on the plan, and may differ from the official ANU position.

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