More transparency needed to back research excellence claims

A new paper by Emeritus Professor Frank Larkins questions whether Australian research performance, particularly in science disciplines, is really improving. Noting the lack of transparency in the benchmarks used to evaluate performance, Professor Larkins asks whether claims of excellence can really stand up to scrutiny.  His paper, Research at Australian Universities: Is Excellence Really Excellent? released through Melbourne University’s Centre for the Study of Higher Education, also discusses the contrast in results between science based disciplines and those in Social Sciences and Humanities. The full paper is available at: https://melbourne-cshe.unimelb.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/3058221/2019_F-P-Larkins_ERA-Excellence.pdf

The impact of failure

I can’t help thinking contemporary art is an endangered species in the contemporary university. Within the institution’s overly prescribed research mandates, researchers (who ten years ago used to be called artists) need to align themselves with research clusters and groups and the strategic plan of the corporate university - Contemporary art is a difficult fit for university metrics. And perhaps that’s the point.

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