Major ARC reforms will strengthen Australia’s research capability

August 22, 2023

The Australian Academy of Science applauds the announcement today by Federal Education Minister Jason Clare that he will accept all 10 recommendations of the review of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Act (2001).

Academy President Professor Chennupati Jagadish said the reforms will create a far more robust and research-oriented system.

“Limiting the unrestricted use of ministerial discretion to veto properly assessed and reviewed research proposals is a particularly significant reform and something that will bring great relief to our nation’s research community,” Professor Jagadish said.

“When the integrity of Australia’s research system is compromised by perceived or actual political interference, there are real costs for the research sector and indeed for the nation – by eroding trust and damaging the relationships researchers have with industry, the Australian community, and international partners.

“The establishment of a board as the accountable authority for the organisation will strengthen and modernise the governance of the ARC.

“Appointees to this board must have extensive experience in the research system.”

The Academy thanks Professors Sheil, Dodds and Hutchinson for their work on this review and the Education Minister for comprehensively responding to the review.

We look forward to working with the ARC and the Australian Government to ensure the amendments to the Act are appropriate.

© 2024 Australian Academy of Science