December 14, 2022

Review of the Australian Research Council

Summary of IRU Recommendations 

1. The primary purpose of the ARC is to support basic research across all non-medical disciplines. 

2. A commitment to the peer review process (based on the Haldane Principle) should be included in the ARC Act, with limited Ministerial discretion and no National Interest Test statements. 

3. The ARC Act should include more detail and clarity about the role and responsibilities of the CEO. 

4. The ARC should retain a role to provide advice on research quality, impact and integrity, and this should be included in the Act. 

5. ERA should be discontinued, with a new model developed in consultation with the sector. 

6. The ARC should lead a new and more proactive approach to research impact. 

7. Administrative burden and duplication should be addressed, with any national security due diligence transparent and streamlined earlier in the process. 

8. The ARC should increase transparency on selection report data, assessment criteria and support for postdoctoral researchers. 

9. There are cross-cutting issues in the research system – such as Indigenous knowledge, equity and diversity and open access/open data – where the ARC could play a valuable leadership role. 

10. Any changes recommended from the ARC Review need to explicitly acknowledge the interdependencies with other government review processes, such as the Universities Accord. 

Read our full submission here.