1 Flinders Future Focus Strategic Plan Differentiate Focus IntensiFy
4 4 Flinders Future Focus Building on our successes The Flinders Strategic Plan, Inspiring Flinders Future , affirmed the University s ongoing commitment to change and transformation. Flinders Future Focus builds on the progress we have made and identifies our key strategic priorities to At the centre of the plan is a vision for Flinders as a medium-sized university characterised by a distinctive high quality undergraduate program, selected postgraduate coursework programs and focused research excellence. The University will continue to serve its local communities in particular the southern suburbs of Adelaide and be recognised as playing a significant role in the economic transformation of that experiment and experiment bravely Peter Karmel, Founding Vice Chancellor, 1965 region. At the same time we will broaden and deepen the University s engagement with Charles Darwin University and the Northern Territory to help build the regional economic corridor between South Australia and Northern Territory. The key strategic priorities and the actions underpinning their implementation are all critical to delivering this vision and ensuring that in doing so Flinders is recognised as one of the most innovative and effective members of Australia s higher education system. Strategic context There have been some significant changes since the publication of the Strategic Plan. The deregulation of the undergraduate higher education market in Australia following the Bradley Review has allowed Flinders to grow at a rate of around 7% over each of the last three years. We expect growth to continue over the period of the new plan, subject to any changes in government policy. It is important in so doing that we focus on the quality of entrants to our programs, while maintaining our commitment to providing opportunities to widen participation from historically under-represented communities. This means that our focus on high quality teaching, student retention, the relevance of our qualifications and the development of graduate qualities must continue. At the same time we must develop our teaching practices to make best use of technology-assisted learning and enhance the experience of our learners across all of our onshore and offshore locations. A 2012 report by Australia s Workforce and Productivity Agency emphasises health care and social assistance as the top employment growth industry with professional, scientific and technical services and education and training as the next two growth sectors. Flinders is well positioned to respond to these skills needs and will ensure that we maintain our academic focus in these areas.
5 5 Differentiate, Focus and intensify Flinders Future Focus updates our priority activities to achieve the challenging goals and aspirations for the University. To deliver the Plan fully and successfully requires us to make some hard decisions and choices. The choices are as much about our behaviours and attitudes as our actions. Each of us needs to be willing to: seek better and more efficient ways to deliver our enabling services in more standardised ways, better use technologies in support of learning, consider our traditional approaches in areas such as teaching and learning from best practice at Flinders and elsewhere, look sideways and collaborate internally and externally in ways that deliver better student outcomes and greater research focus, and recognise that some things that we have done or taught or researched have come to a natural end and that new opportunities need to be actively sought. To assist with differentiation and concentration, a University purpose statement has been added. This reiterates the University s social mission and role in the development of the central South Australia-Northern Territory corridor of Australia including its connection to Asia and the wider world. The Plan itself is more focussed and has a reduced number of high level strategic actions. These will in turn inform and guide our reporting to the Council and our wider external stakeholders. While the 9 key strategic priorities of the Strategic Plan have been retained, they are now more tightly linked to, and help characterise, the University s 5 main values: Socially responsible Student centred Distinctive in research Globally connected Sustainable and rewarding In 2013 a new cross-university planning process will be developed and rolled-out. This will enable Faculties and Schools to align their planning and priority setting in such a way that collectively we deliver the Strategic Plan. In this context, the strategic approach differentiate, focus and intensify is vitally important. The Plan does not lay out specifically where we will invest, what we will research or which course we will offer. However, if in every decision we contemplate, in every appointment we make and in every relationship we develop and/or foster we ask: How will this differentiate, focus and intensify? I am confident that we will not only deliver on this Strategic Plan but perhaps more importantly deliver on our shared vision for a great Flinders University. I challenge us all to embrace the necessary change and continue, as Peter Karmel said over 40 years ago, to experiment and experiment bravely. Professor Michael Barber Vice-Chancellor and President March 2013
6 6 Flinders Future Focus Vision Flinders is the University that engages Purpose We aim to transform the lives of individuals and communities, and to find ethical and innovative solutions to make a positive difference to society s most challenging problems. Our attention on South Australia and the Northern Territory has the explicit objective of encouraging the sustainable economic, social and cultural development of the central corridor of Australia and expanding its connection to Asia and the wider world. We commit to: High quality teaching Internationally respected and high impact research Rigorous intellectual enquiry The promotion of fairness, integrity, equity, social justice, ethics, diversity and cross-cultural understanding and respect, with a special recognition of Australian Indigenous cultures Environmental sustainability Individual responsibility and achievement complementing collaboration and teamwork. To deliver our purpose, Flinders University must be flexible, responsive, efficient and highly collaborative both internally and externally. We need to identify clearly the areas in which we are excellent and distinctive, and align our activities to support those areas. Each of the nine key strategic priorities is individually important. More important, however, is the way they interact and combine to advance this Strategic Plan and our underlying vision of making a real difference to the world in which we live. Our approach over the period of this Plan is to: Differentiate, Focus and Intensify our activities.
7 7 Values AND Key strategic priorities SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE STUDENT CENTRED Building Supportive Communities By being outwardly engaged, with strong links to our stakeholders and serving the communities in which we operate Enhancing Educational Opportunities Through innovative and flexible entry pathways, a relevant and dynamic course profile, and improving the retention, progression and achievement of our students Enhancing The Student Experience By showing respect for their views and care for their welfare, by providing effective support services, and maintaining a lively campus culture Valuing Quality In Teaching As an unwavering commitment and a defining characteristic of Flinders DISTINCTIVE in RESEARCH 5 Focusing Research On those who are research active and early career researchers, and on high quality, targeted and collaborative research and research training that makes a difference GLOBALLY CONNECTED 6 Strengthening Internationalisation By expanding opportunities and benefits for students, staff and our communities to engage in the global society SUSTAINABLE AND REWARDING Valuing Our People By supporting and encouraging all staff to achieve the highest level of performance, deliver our vision and adapt to the changes required Committing To Environmental Excellence By becoming internationally recognised for innovative research and teaching by reducing the environmental impact of our activities Improving Our Capacity To Deliver By ensuring that our available resources are increased and used in the most effective and efficient ways
8 8 Flinders Future Focus SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE At the heart of Flinders University, from its birth in 1966, is our commitment to social justice and human well-being. This runs through all of our learning and teaching, our research and our collaborations and is the passion of our staff. This updated Plan highlights our commitment to the purpose of the University. We engage with our communities to enhance the social, cultural and economic lives of the regions we serve, in South Australia, the Northern Territory and across Australia and the world. In particular, we reaffirm our commitment to working with Indigenous communities and across the centre of Australia which, in part, will be taken forward through our Indigenous Engagement Framework. Our partnership with government and local councils in the development of Flinders at Tonsley a major regeneration project will take shape over the period of this plan, and will strengthen our engagement with local enterprises and communities.
9 9 Key strategic priority Building Supportive Communities 1We will Support our students past and present and staff engaged within communities to expand horizons and transform the lives of individuals and the communities we serve Actions Develop Tonsley as a driver for economic and community regeneration Enhance our strategic partnership and positive local outcomes with Charles Darwin University Further Schools and Faculties engagement with business and community designed to focus on their priorities Indicators Strategic delivery model agreed with key partners and Tonsley building project delivered on time and on budget Future joint priorities for South Australia and Northern Territory agreed with Charles Darwin University and implemented expand horizons and transform the lives of individuals and the communities we serve Business, alumni and community engagement increased by each School on baseline measurement from 2013 Quantitative increase in impact of University engagement as measured by a range of economic indicators Increased number of alumni who are actively engaged in University projects
10 10 Flinders Future Focus STUDENT CENTRED Students are at the centre of Flinders University. As a result of our success in widening access to University education, our students are more diverse than ever, as are the locations in which we deliver. We will continue to ensure that our approaches to learning and teaching and all aspects of the broader experience of our students are relevant and of consistently high quality across all of our locations in Australia and beyond, and in our virtual as well as our physical presences. Critical in this is ensuring that every Flinders graduate has the opportunity to develop values and competencies which will enable them to be successful in a variety of roles throughout their working lives. This plan emphasises the centrality of our student experience and the need to personalise that for each and every learner. We will do further work on all aspects of that experience to broaden pathways into Flinders, to support successful transition for new students, to improve learning and employability outcomes, to enable access to high quality information, advice and support at a time and place which meets student needs, and to improve our physical and virtual learning environments including enhanced support for online learning development.
11 Key strategic priorities Enhancing Educational Opportunities Enhancing The Student Experience Valuing Quality In Teaching We will Develop innovative and flexible entry pathways, build a relevant and dynamic course profile, and improve student achievement Engage with our students, show respect for their views and care for their welfare through effective support services and provision of attractive opportunities to engage in University life whatever their circumstances Insist upon, support and recognise quality in teaching Actions Define/scope Student Hub Review academic priorities and graduate qualities Plan for online learning Indicators New Student Hub, virtual and actual, in place Student targets: Total student enrolments to exceed 25,000 Proportion of low SES students to increase by 10% (23% of total enrolment in 2012) International student enrolments to exceed 5,000 (just under 4,000 in 2012) engage with our students, show respect for their views and care for their welfare Student successful completion to increase from 4,800 in 2011 to 5,500 in 2015 and graduate employment to increase from 77% to 80% in 2015 Student and employer satisfaction improved against all key national quality of teaching measures
12 12 Flinders Future Focus DISTINCTIVE RESEARCH Continuing the theme of differentiation and focus, Flinders has developed a new Research Plan. Our research must continue to be relevant, of high quality and with real impact. We will continue to support and grow the areas in which Flinders makes a real difference in our communities through further development of research centres and institutes that draw on expertise across disciplines to address society s most challenging issues. This will be supported through our ongoing program of strategic professorial appointments to lead and intensify our research effort. We will continue to improve the experience of our research students including enhancement of the Office of the Dean of Graduate Research and support for early career researchers. The principal challenge over the period of this Plan is for us to build scale and impact in our priority research activities. This requires selective and strategic external collaborations and focussed internal efforts.
13 13 Key strategic priority 5Focusing Research We will Focus on those who are or may be research active and on research that is high quality, targeted, and collaborative, so that we can make a positive contribution to resolving society s most challenging problems Actions Identify and invest in targeted areas of strength and opportunity and reach critical mass in these areas Ensure that the majority of our disciplines are rated as world standard Indicators Research income increased by 20% from $53m (2011) to $64m (2016) Priority areas identified, investment strategy implemented and quantitative scale targets introduced for research impact and collaboration invest in targeted areas of strength and opportunity 100% of academic staff in balanced portfolio roles are research active
14 14 Flinders Future Focus GLOBALLY CONNECTED Flinders has a wide international reach and will build on our existing successful international partnerships over the period of this Plan. Our focus must be on widening our academic engagement where we have strong current or potential partnerships to ensure maximum opportunity for academic exchange and learning for our students and our staff. Partnership and outward mobility are key themes and the University will develop its support mechanisms to ensure both opportunity for and recognition of international activity to build these relationships. The University recognises the importance of the dynamic region of Asia for Australia and, in particular, the economies of South Australia and the Northern Territory. We also recognise the importance of international connectedness of Asia to the wider world. We will develop and intensify our activities in and across this and other significant regions of the world through partnerships that differentiate, focus and intensify our global engagement.
15 15 Key strategic priority 6 Strengthening Internationalisation We will Develop sustainable partnerships with targeted partners to expand opportunities and benefits for students, staff and our communities Actions Increase international opportunities for students including through online learning and outward student mobility Support development of the Flinders International Study Centre (FISC) Intensify and focus our Asia engagement including specified education, research and community partnerships and measures Indicators Number of domestic graduates who have had an international experience increased from 4.8% of graduates to 10% by 2016 (221 in 2011) increase international opportunities for students Achieve Business Case targets for FISC student intakes 300 students Focus international plan and develop associated measures
16 16 Flinders Future Focus SUSTAINABLE AND REWARDING Critical in the delivery of our purpose and the commitments above are our professional support services and the University s physical and virtual infrastructure. Over the period of the plan, the University will review and plan for our approach to the delivery of facilities and services for Faculties and Schools. This will ensure that Flinders has the capacity and capabilities we need for the future and that our professional, as well as our academic staff, have full access to support and development. Our commitment to diversity and opportunity across our workforce is an intrinsic part of ensuring the success of Flinders University. The University s processes will ensure that we focus on and recognise contribution to the achievement of our priorities. Principal activities will include finalising the new University estates and information technology strategies and associated investment plans. Building Flinders at Tonsley is the first stage of what will be an ambitious infrastructure plan for the next 20 years. Flinders will implement its Sustainability Action Plan over this period as reaffirmation of its commitment to environmental excellence. To ensure that University investment is commensurate with the ambitions above, we will embed our 5 year rolling financial plan and work towards the achievement of the key financial performance indicators agreed by Flinders University Council.
17 17 Key strategic priority 7Valuing Our People We will Nurture leadership and change management skills and actively promote awareness of, and respect for, the diversity of our staff Actions Provide high quality professional development staff activities to ensure staff are well prepared for, and well supported in, their change management roles Embed effective performance management throughout the University so that good performance is recognised, support and career development opportunities are provided, and action is taken to remedy unsatisfactory performance Indicators Improved levels of engagement and commitment as evidenced by the YourVoice survey of staff satisfaction nurture leadership and change management skills Greater diversity in the workforce: under the University s Employment Strategy for Indigenous Australians increase in the number of Indigenous staff (from 40 in 2012 to 60 in 2016) a 10% relative increase in the number of women in senior leadership positions (from a base of 8 of 36 in 2012) Improved effectiveness of the performance review process as measured by compliance data generated through the key actions taken
18 18 Flinders Future Focus Key strategic priority 8 Committing To Environmental Excellence We will Develop curricula and cross-disciplinary research addressing sustainability issues and reduce the environmental impact of our activities sustain a supportive community of practice for academics conducting sustainability oriented teaching and research Indicators An increase of 20% in the number of Flinders enrolments in topics in relevant discipline areas Increased levels of funding secured by research units in the areas of environmental sustainability Reduction in use of energy, water and paper and an increase in the supply of renewable energy at Flinders campuses Actions Develop a range of training, engagement and communication activities to build awareness amongst Flinders staff and students Encourage and sustain a supportive community of practice for academics conducting sustainability oriented teaching and research Implement a range of renewable energy and water efficiency projects Initial artist s impression of the proposed Flinders University building at Tonsley Park TONSLEY_ Revision 00 Date 28-Fe
19 19 Key strategic priority 9 Improving Our CapaCity To Deliver We will Ensure that our strategic and operational priorities can be met by working with the University s resource base our people, our finances and our locations in the most effective and efficient manner Actions Undertake support services refresh and renew program to achieve improvements in efficiency and service delivery and to increase academic capacity Establish an asset efficiency program to increase the utilisation, flexibility and cost effectiveness of our facilities and ICT framework Establish a development fund-raising program Indicators Improved delivery of support services as benchmarked against sector and targets Improved utilisation of University assets against sector benchmarks and targets 15% increase in revenue generated per FTE from 2011 baseline Support services costs reduce to 30% of total University revenues Increase in donations against 2012 baseline undertake support services refresh and renew program to achieve improvements in efficiency and service delivery and to increase academic capacity Health Science Lecture Theatres Image credit: Grant Hancock bruary-2013 Scale Not to Scale Client Flinders University Project Name Flinders University: School of Computer Science, Drawing External view from South East (Artist s Impression Only)
20 20 My employments and inclinations lead to the extension of happiness and of sciences, and not to the destruction of mankind. Matthew Flinders Private Journal, 13 October 1805
23 23 CONTACT Office of the Vice-Chancellor Vice-President Strategy & Community Engagement P: flinders.edu.au CRICOS No 00114A
24 24 Flinders Future Focus