Alliance to boost national research links 


An alliance between The Australian National University and Charles Darwin University has been established to boost the nation’s collaborative research linkages and increase access to higher education for regional and disadvantaged students.

The Vice-Chancellors of ANU and CDU, Professor Ian Chubb and Professor Barney Glover, signed a memorandum of understanding today at Parliament House in Canberra, witnessed by the Minister for Indigenous Health, Rural and Regional Health and Regional Services Delivery, Warren Snowdon.

The alliance will:

• create links in areas of common research and education interest, including Indigenous studies, environmental studies and health sciences;

• open a Summer Research Scholars program later this year, allowing third year students interested in a research career to work with a leading academic in their field at either institution; and 

• create new Early Career Research Fellowships, allowing CDU staff to develop their research skills by spending time in the research-intensive environment at ANU.

ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Chubb said the alliance was a practical example of the ‘hubs and spokes’ model for higher education.

“Charles Darwin and ANU are building on our individual and complementary strengths to increase research and education linkages in Australia,” Professor Chubb said.

“As the national university, ANU welcomes the opportunity to work with CDU to strengthen the national research capacity, while at the same time expanding our connections with the Northern Territory community.”

“The alliance will also boost opportunities for students from regional and rural Australia, including those from lower socio-economic backgrounds,” he said.

CDU Vice-Chancellor Professor Barney Glover said his university was excited about the opportunity to partner with the nation’s leading research-intensive university.

“This partnership will enhance opportunities for CDU students and staff, as well as allowing people from ANU to access the best of what CDU has to offer,” Professor Glover said.

“Our shared focus on environmental sciences, in particular, will also be a boost to the communities we serve,” he said.

In addition to increasing research linkages, the ANU and CDU alliance will improve pathways to university study for students from regional and rural Australia, including those from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

The universities are exploring ways to introduce Foundation Degrees - two-year full-time equivalent awards based on workplace integrated learning and focussed on increasing participation in tertiary education.

The alliance will also enable shared courses in areas like music and language study, as well as allowing ANU and CDU staff to share expertise in campus sustainability projects.