The University of the Future

Fuelled by uncertain funding models, rigid workforce systems and changing student demands, Australian tertiary education sector is exploring how to remain relevant in an increasingly differentiated and global education market. This sector is currently undergoing major structural reformations and trying to balance a variety of stakeholder interests, and needs to make fundamental choices to ensure its sustainability.

The investigation into the consequences of these changes is necessary to ensure that the sector is well-equipped for the future. Lee Hecht Harrison (LHH) - a global human capital consulting company with which KBRS maintains a strategic partnership - has a substantial footprint in the Australian Higher Education sector. They conducted interviews with key leaders in the sector from major Australian/New Zealand universities. This primary research aimed to determine how well-equipped universities are of the changing structure, and identify areas which need to be reformed.

The outcome of this substantive piece of work is a report that elucidates the requirements and readiness for implementing a significant transformation agenda. This report provides an opportunity for the sector to reflect on the future state – ‘What to transform into’, and to undertake a gap analysis in regards to the current versus the future capability, competence and capacity to implement transformation- addressing ‘how do we get there?’ question.

The themes and challenges faced by institutions in Australia have many similarities to those encountered by Canadian institutions, making the resulting report relevant to leaders in Canada.

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