News from the CRC
CRC is focused and engaged: review panel
An independent review of the achievements, the governance and management of the CRC over its first four and a half years has been completed. Commissioned by the CRC Board, the review was carried out to ensure that the CRC understands what it is doing well and not so well, to ensure that steps can be taken to improve the way the CRC operates. The review was also asked to consider plans for the future of the CRC beyond the current funding period.
In general, the independent review panel confirmed that the CRC is progressing well with its research, utilisation and outreach activities and is on the right track to defining its longer-term future.
Led by Professor Mary O’Kane AC and including Euan Ferguson, AFSM and Dr Tracey Arklay, the review panel heard from staff, researchers, end-users and PhD students in May on current work and on the future directions of not just the research, but the centre itself.
The panel gave its opinions on progress and the direction of the research program, and provided advice and options on moving forward. It found that the research is of very good quality and that end-users find the CRC work important in building their appreciation of the value of research, particularly strategically focused research.
The review panel made recommendations on options for transitioning from a CRC to a research centre after the CRC funding ends in 2021.
This guidance was timely and helpful, explained CRC CEO Dr Richard Thornton. “This review was an opportunity to gain key insights from independent experts on how we are tracking and where we need to head,” Dr Thornton said.
“We have collectively achieved a great deal over the last four years, and there are many good examples of how our research is making a difference to the way our partners carry out their business. But there is still more to do, and the findings of the review will help us continue to build an ongoing research capability for the sector.”
The review took place on 9-11 May. While a fourth-year review is no longer an official requirement of the Commonwealth CRC program, the CRC Board felt that an independent review would still be useful as an opportunity for external reviewers to comment on governance and management arrangements, research and outputs, utilisation activities and to provide suggestions for the current operations and on opportunities for its future structure.
The CRC will now use the findings of the review to inform its practices in research and science innovation. The recommendations will be discussed by the Board at its next meeting in August in Perth.