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Professor Mary Spongberg appointed to ARC expert group


Sharlene King, media office at Southern Cross University
18 October 2022

Southern Cross University has a seat on the Australian Research Council’s working group for a new Excellence in Research for Australia metric.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Mary Spongberg joins the 14-member panel drawn from research, education and government nationwide. The expert working group has been charged with developing a new data-driven assessment approach for Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA). 

Professor Spongberg’s appointment reflects Southern Cross University’s strong and rising research reputation. 

“On each of our campuses, Southern Cross University researchers are increasing knowledge and finding solutions in areas such as the environment, health, society, technology and education,” Professor Spongberg said. 

“ERA has been a very important vehicle for driving research quality in Australia and has demonstrated that research excellence can be found across the sector. It’s great to have a regional voice on this important working group.” 

ERA is Australia’s national research assessment and is administered by the Australian Research Council (ARC). It identifies and promotes excellence in research in Australia’s higher education institutions through comparisons with international benchmarks. 

Ms Judi Zielke PSM, ARC Chief Executive Officer, said the working group will would provide insight and expertise in developing the ERA transition plan. 

“The ARC recognises the importance of working with experts across the higher education and research sector, especially with the diverse range of research disciplines that ERA covers,” said Ms Zielke.   

“A revised ERA will give Australians confidence that Australian universities continue to produce world-leading, quality research for the advancement of Australian society.” 

The transition plan is scheduled to be delivered by December 2022 for implementation in 2024-25. An ERA evaluation round will not be conducted in 2023, thereby reducing the workload for universities and enabling the ARC to prioritise the transition. 

The working group comprises:  

  • Ms Judi Zielke PSM, CEO, ARC (Chair)
  • Professor Marnie Hughes-Warrington AO, DVCR, University of South Australia
  • Professor Chris Moran FTSE, DVCR, Curtin University
  • Professor Mary Spongberg, DVCR, Southern Cross University
  • Professor Nick Fisk AM, DVCR, University of New South Wales
  • Professor Kate McGrath, DVCR, University of Technology Sydney
  • Professor Duncan Ivison FAHA, Previous DVCR, University of Sydney
  • Mr Alistair Maclean, Chief Executive Officer, Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency
  • Ms Vicki Thomson, CEO, Go8
  • Mr Dom English, First Assistant Secretary, Department of Education
  • Professor Steve Larkin, PVC-Indigenous Engagement, University of Adelaide
  • Professor Cameron Neylon, Curtin University
  • Mr Tony Sheil, Director, Office for Research, Griffith University
  • Ms Michelle Duryea, Edith Cowan University and Convenor, Research Information and Reporting Special Interest Group, Australasian Research Management Society