First Annual Conference, 19 February 2021

Organized by The University of Sydney Chapter (University of Sydney Association of Professors, USAP)

Conference Program


Universities in 2030

Foreword

The current predicament of Australian universities is not financial. It is a reflection of attention and energy diverted from education and scholarship into monetary goals and administrative control.

The Australian Association of University Professors (AAUP) was founded to address this maldevelopment and a framework named The Pillars of a University (What a University should be) has been formulated by its members following extensive national consultation (1).

The needs are clear. Students should be prepared to create and confront the challenges of the future. Getting them ready for jobs that may no longer exist by the time of their graduation is insufficient.

Higher education has disappeared from public debate and political view during recent elections. This is a dangerous development for the future of Australian democracy.

Refocusing public debate on future-proofing our universities will help protect Australian society. We agree that the strength of our institutions of government depends on the strength of our system of education (2). In this context, we strongly endorse academic freedom when speaking or writing as citizens as this is essential for a modern democracy that needs to be able to take on challenges such as COVID-19 biosecurity, climate change or increasing competition from artificial intelligence.

Welcome to the Conference!

USAP and AAUP Councils

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1 http://www.professoriate.org/2020/03/21/statement-on-academic-freedom-the-pillars-of-a-university-what-a-university-should-be/

2 https://www.aaup.org/news/president-trump-must-be-removed