MOVING TARGETS – Responding to reduced budgets
By Professor Gordon Shirley
One of the challenges the university faces is that the model of service to the region has to be adjusted to meet the realities of our times. Sixty years ago the real philosophy was to create a civil service that would replace the colonials; the campus was also smaller and residential. Today, the student body has grown (currently some 43,000 students across the four campuses), so it is not possible to move people around the region as easily as used to happen.
As we expand, we find ourselves in a position where we have to offer all the specializations on each campus. People say the regional spirit is being lost because students are largely confined to their home campuses. In my opinion, regionality for the founding fathers meant the opportunity to have equal access to the various disciplines, regardless of your country of birth.
I think regionalism is as important as it was 60 years ago. We may ask if it has worked in terms of market access as some of our intra-regional markets are still evidently too closed to each other. I think the intention was for us to move forward together, but there is limited political will to share resources. A case in point: our systems of governance require an independent civil service. It is not clear to me that the …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.