After the release of the 2017/2018 Federal Budget, the Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations (CAPA) questions the conspicuous lack of university research funding. CAPA had, perhaps foolishly, hoped there would be some level of investment in university research funding given the rhetoric we have endured over the past 12 months.
Even the well-received National Infrastructure Roadmap does not have a clearly defined funding source, with the announcement that, at best, the Federal Government will develop a plan to follow the plan.
Universities are still the best place to ensure long-term research goals can be met, yet they are struggling under a government that is only interested in quick wins, not long term investment.
At what point will the Federal Government get serious about research and innovation? While the Federal Budget does have a number of initiatives funding short-term individual projects, there is no real commitment to long-term research funding- the kind of research funding that changes a country’s economy from resource-based to research-based.
CAPA National President Peter Derbyshire says, “How the Federal Government expects Australia to become a world leader in science, innovation and research with no secure long-term funding is beyond me.”
“Research requires evidence to be acceptable, just like research funding requires long-term investment to be acceptable.”
“It seems that the Government is fine with trashing the highly successful Education Investment Fund without even having the decency to commit funding to the National Infrastructure Roadmap,” says Mr Derbyshire.
CAPA urges the Federal Government to look to fund research in the long-term through investing in our universities, our research training programs, and our students.
For comment: Peter Derbyshire, National President, CAPA: 0435 047 817 / email@example.com