2023 in review – some highlights

Posted in News on 19 December 2023

Member Gathering Sydney: Members gathered in Sydney to discuss the state of the higher education sector and the current policy environment, including around the Universities Accord.

Universities Accord: We consulted widely with membership as part of our submissions in response to the Universities Accord Discussion Paper and Interim Report. With seven consultations including three in person, the DASSH team was able to draw on the generous contributions of more than 100 members. The process is still underway with the Advisory Panel due to report to the Minister for Education Jason Clare any day now.

We are poised for a year of policy action as the findings are acted on and changes are implemented.

Member Gathering Melbourne: Members gathered in Melbourne to discuss the current climate in the higher education sector.

Policy and Communications Officer: We welcomed Rebekah Harms as our new Policy and Communications Officer.

Network of Associate and Deputy Deans: The Network of Associate and Deputy Deans welcomed its new Special Interest Group Leaders Assoc Prof Gail Crimmins (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion), Assoc Prof Sandra Phillips (Indigenous) and Prof Craig Batty (Research). The network hosted six webinars hosted by group leaders and facilitated direct feedback sessions with the Australian Research Council. The conference events included international and Australian speakers. Thank you to Convenor Andrea Rizzi for his contributions over the last 18 months. We appreciate the energy you’ve brought to the role!

ARC workshop: Trust: We hosted the first workshop connecting members with the ARC, featuring Prof Alison Ross and Prof Anika Gauja from the ARC.

NZ trip: DASSH President Nick Bisley travelled to Aotearoa New Zealand to meet with members.

ARC workshop: Workforce and Resilience: We hosted the second workshop connecting members with the ARC, featuring Prof Alison Ross and Prof Anika Gauja from the ARC.

Social Sciences Week: NOADD Convenor Prof Andrea Rizzi chaired a session on the future of peer-review in the social sciences and humanities together with Dr Jason Chin, Dr Rachael Brown, Prof Fiona Fidler and Prof Simine Vazire.

First Nations Voice: The DASSH Board released a statement in support of a First Nations Voice being enshrined in the constitution.

2023 DASSH Conference: Members gathered in Perth for this year’s Conference, featuring an array of speakers from around Australia and the world. We had about 80 attendees and some fascinating conversations – you can read a wrap up here.

Australia’s National Science and Research Priorities: We gave feedback on the draft National Science and Research Priorities.

US trip: Executive Director Jane Ryan travelled to the US where she attended the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences Annual Meeting and met with Deans from a number of institutions as well as with leaders and advocates for our disciplines from several organisations in Washington DC.

ARC Review: We released a statement welcoming the Australian Research Council Amendment (Review Response) Bill 2023 being tabled in parliament.

Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences ARC Centres of Excellence Workshop: We co-hosted a workshop with the Australian Research Council, the Australian Academy of the Humanities and the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia where we gained insights about the ARC’s Centres of Excellence program.

Research projects: We are currently conducting a mapping project of humanities, arts and social sciences disciplines since 2011 to give us a clearer idea of the current landscape. We are also compiling two reports which explore the economic value of the humanities, arts and social sciences in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand.