December 8, 2008

IRU Australia announces Chair for 2009-2010

Innovative Research Universities (IRU) Australia today announced that Professor Sandra Harding, the Vice-Chancellor of James Cook University (JCU), will take up the Chair of the university network for a 2 year term from 1 January 2009.

Professor Sandra Harding joined JCU as Vice-Chancellor and President in January 2007. Between 1997 and 2006, she held a number of senior executive roles at the Queensland University of Technology, including Deputy Vice-Chancellor (International and Development) and (executive) Dean of the Faculty of Business.

Professor Harding has undertaken a wide variety of Board and Council roles. She was the inaugural President of the Australian Business Deans Council and Vice-President of the Australian Universities Community Engagement Alliance. Professor Harding spent five years as Chairman of the Australian Statistics Advisory Council providing advice on Australia’s national statistical priorities, was a member of the HIH Review Panel from 2001-2007 and is currently a Director of the Australian Institute for Commercialisation and the Global Foundation for Management Education (Montreal).

“IRU Australia is a leading advocate for the advancement of higher education policy in Australia and I am delighted to accept the role of Chair in a time of such significant policy reform,” said Professor Harding.

“Collaboration between universities is critically important if we want to achieve a vibrant and internationally connected world-class university system in Australia. The IRU Australia member universities – Flinders, Griffith, James Cook, LaTrobe, Murdoch and Newcastle – promote excellence through collaboration in research and education and share a long-standing commitment to social inclusion. By working together, we add value to our students, external partners and staff,” said Professor Harding.

The current Chair of IRU Australia, Professor John Yovich, congratulated Professor Harding on her appointment.

“In the period since JCU joined the network in 2007, Professor Harding has made a substantial and enthusiastic contribution to IRU Australia. Under her leadership, IRU Australia will further strengthen its influence and contribution to Australian higher education said Professor Yovich.