November 9, 2022

New IRU Strategy focuses on shared values and equity

The Innovative Research Universities (IRU) has today launched its new 2022-2027 Strategy, which focuses on three key priorities: equity in higher education, innovative research and international engagement with a focus on our Indo-Pacific region.

The Strategy is driven by the group’s ongoing commitment to the shared values of innovation, respect, inclusion and integrity, and recognises the opportunity for a step-change in universities and in higher education policy following on from the COVID-19 pandemic.

IRU Chair Professor Carolyn Evans said the values and priorities that brought IRU members together almost twenty years ago remain as important as ever and are essential for Australia’s social and economic development.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted key challenges that will have long-term impacts on higher education,” she said. “Our members share a commitment to the idea of universities as a force for good in their communities and it’s this commitment that forms the backbone of our strategy for the next five years.”

The strategy identifies five core pillars that will inform the group’s activities over the next five years, with a focus on collaboration, policy, analysis, public engagement and partnerships.

IRU Executive Director Paul Harris said these pillars are the foundation for new strategic initiatives including supporting student success and equity, supporting young Indigenous researchers and strengthening partnerships in India and the Pacific.

“This strategy confirms our continued commitment to evidence-based policy that has underpinned IRU work for the past two decades,” he said. “I look forward to implementing the strategy with colleagues in our member universities and through constructive engagement with government.”

The strategy was released on 10 November by Professor Evans at the IRU Senior Leaders Forum, held at the University of Canberra. This is the first time in three years that the IRU has held its Senior Leaders Forum in person.