Community engagement conference hosted by CDU Alice Springs 


The 4th Annual National Conference of the Australian Universities Community Engagement Alliance (AUCEA), hosted by Charles Darwin University (CDU) Alice Springs, will commence on Monday July 2.

The Scholarship of Community Engagement: Australia’s way forward is the theme of the 4th Annual AUCEA Conference to be held at the CDU Alice Springs Campus. 

Pro Vice Chancellor, Community and Access, Don Zoellner said the CDU community looks forward to hosting speakers and delegates. 

‘We are all passionate about redefining and improving research and learning for the greater benefit of Australia’s social and intellectual fabric,’ he said. ‘This conference discusses the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead to achieve this.’ 

The conference will ask delegates to consider:

  • What is the scholarship of community engagement in universities in 2007 almost two decades after Boyer (1990) first coined the phrase?
  • How can engaged teaching, learning and research really make a difference to the social well-being and prosperity of communities, now and in the future?
  • What’s driving university-community engagement at a policy level, how are universities responding and what’s happening in practice, in urban, regional and remote communities across Australia and internationally?

Conference convener and coordinator of community engagement at CDU, Linda Cuttriss says it easy to see that the conference topic has touched a nerve with community and university stakeholders. 

‘The huge level of interest in this year’s AUCEA Conference shows that community engagement is clearly coming of age in Australia,’ Linda said. 

‘Seventy-five submissions for presenters were received from five countries and every state and territory in Australia,’ she said, ‘and there are only a limited number of attendee places still available.’ 

The opening keynote address will be given by Deputy Administrator for the Northern Territory, Mrs Pat Anderson and other key note addresses will be presented by Dr Sherril Gelmon, Professor of Public Health at Portland State University, and Dr Mark Rose, Director of the Centre for Indigenous Education at University of Melbourne, as well as a panel discussion moderated by Dr Barbara Holland from the University of Western Sydney. 

Professor Helen Garnett (Vice Chancellor, Charles Darwin University) Dr Diana Natalicio (President, University of Texas at El Paso, USA), Professor Elizabeth Harman (Vice Chancellor, Victoria University), Professor Sharon Bell (Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Canberra) and Professor John O’Gorman, (Pro Vice Chancellor, Australian Catholic University) will each give a synthesis of the strategic, structural and operational responses to the drivers of community engagement in their universities. 

Conference delegates will also be treated to a number of unique experience and post-conference tours including a desert dinner at Ooraminna Homestead and visits to the Centre for Remote Heath, Centre for Appropriate Technology and the Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre. 

Concurrent presentations and panel discussions cover a wide range of topics on the conference themes. The full program is available on the conference website:

Registrations are still open. 

For any queries, please contact Linda Cuttriss, CDU’s coordinator Community Engagement and conference convenor on 08 8946 6336 or email or the conference secretariat