Valuing and Assessing Interdisciplinary Research
ASIA AUSTRALIA TRANSATIONAL CONNECTIONS
47th Annual Symposium, Australian Academy of the Humanities
18 November 2016
Ms Leanne Harvey
Acting Chief Executive Officer Australian Research Council

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2016–17 Federal Budget—$450.6 billion

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Diagram to illustrate proportion of funding allocated in 2016–17 Federal Budget to all Australian departments and agencies. Dollars allocated to agencies are shown by the size of the circles of each department and agency.

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2016–17 Federal Budget—R&D $10.1 billion

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Diagram to illustrate proportion of funding allocated in 2016–17 Federal Budget to all Australian departments and agencies. Dollars allocated to agencies are shown by the size of the circles of each department and agency. This graph draws attention to the proportion of R&D allocated funding.

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ARC NCGP funding by Fields of Research 2009–2015 

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 Stacked area chart showing ARC NCGP funding by Fields of Research (FoR) for years 2009–2015.  

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ARC Statement of Support for Interdisciplinary Research

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ARC Website image: ARC Statement of Support for Interdisciplinary Research—including Overview, What is interdisciplinary research?, Principles, Initiatives in place, Actions 2016–17. Screenshot of ARC Statement of Support for Interdisciplinary Research document cover. 

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Interdisciplinary Research: ARC actions 2016–17

National Competitive Grants Program

  • To better understand the interdisciplinary research profile of ARC-funded researchers
  • To ensure appropriate assessment of interdisciplinary proposals
  • To foster a supportive environment for interdisciplinary research.

Engagement and Impact exercise

  • To help develop methods for evaluating the impact and effectiveness of interdisciplinary research within current and future evaluative processes. 

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Interdisciplinary Research—funded projects, Discovery Projects 2010–2016

 

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Network diagram illustrating interdisciplinary research connections of projects funded under the Discovery Projects scheme (2010–2016) by 2-digit Field of Research code.

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Discovery Projects 2017—‘Is your project interdisciplinary?’ by 2-digit FoR code

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Stacked bar chart showing split of interdisciplinary research across different Field of Research codes. Also shown as a percentage.

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State of Australian University Research 2015–2016
Volume 1, ERA National Report, Volume 2, Institutional Insights

ERA 2015 report cover

 

ERA 2015 outcomes show Australia’s universities continue to produce high-quality research across a wide range of disciplines.

Overall research quality is improving and reflects ERA’s role in focussing universities on research quality.

Of the UoEs assessed in both ERA 2015 and the previous round, ERA 2012, 56 per cent of these maintained the same rating, while 29 per cent improved their rating by one.

The ERA results show an extraordinary breadth of outstanding research performance in Australia.

Volume 1, ERA National Report.

ERA 2015 report cover - institutional insights
Our ERA dataset covers all Australian university:
  • research outputs, staffing and activity from 2003 to 2013, and
  • research income and research application data from 2006 to 2013.

Volume 2 looks at selected topics to provide further understanding of the state of Australian university research including:

  • ERA Ratings,
  • Gender and the Research Workforce,
  • Open Access,
  • Volume of Submitted Outputs in ERA 2015, and
  • Percentage Contribution to the National Landscape

Volume 2, Institutional Insights

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ERA 2012 to ERA 2015 Growth and Performance

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Universities performance and growth from ERA 2012 to ERA 2015. Number of outputs +5%, Total HERDC income (Cat 1-4) +13%, Esteem +10%, Number of patents +20%, Number of Units of Evaluation (UoE) +6%.

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Infographic. Broad research disciplines in Australia with 5 or more universities performing well above world standard (ERA Rating of 5). 

Two-digit Fields of Research codes:

  • 01 Mathematical Sciences
  • 02 Physical Sciences
  • 03 Chemical Sciences
  • 05 Environmental Sciences
  • 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences
  • 09 Engineering
  • 11 Medical and Health Sciences
  • 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
  • 18 Law and Legal Studies
  • 21 History and Archaeology

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List of National Strengths (FoR 12–22)* 
4-digit level

Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
1503       Business and Management 

Studies in Human Society
1606       Political Science 

Law and Legal Studies
1801       Law 

Language, Communication and Culture
2002       Cultural Studies
2005       Literary Studies 

History and Archaeology
2103       Historical Studies 

Philosophy and Religious Studies
2203       Philosophy
* data excludes 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences

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Distribution of ERA 2015 ratings
Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS) disciplines (12–22)*

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 Comparison filled area charts showing 4-digit and 2-digit Fields of Research assessed by units of rating in the HASS disciplines (12–22). 

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ERA Ratings comparison for 2010, 2012, 2015
HASS disciplines (12–22)*

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ERA ratings comparison charts for ERA 2010, ERA 2012 and ERA 2015. Diagrams show distribution of ratings across all 4-digit Units of Evaluations (UoE).

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Changes in assessed UoE
ERA 2012–ERA 2015

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Changes in assessed Units of Evaluation (UoE) from ERA 2012 to ERA 2015. HASS Disciplines (12–22) only results.

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Changes in assessed Units of Evaluation (UoE) from ERA 2012 to ERA 2015. National Results. 

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Research Output Types 
HASS disciplines (12–22)*

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ERA 2015 research output types in the HASS disciplines (12–22). Book, Book chapter, Journal article, Conference Publications, Non-tradional Research Outputs (NTRO).

*Note:

  • data excludes 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
  • data includes all submitted research outputs by eligible institutions for ERA 2015 

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Journals—HASS disciplines (12–22)*
Top 25 journals by volume of submitted outputs

 

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Top 25 Journals by volume of submitted outputs in the HASS disciplines (12–22):

  • Australian Journal of Teacher Education
  • The International Journal of Learning
  • Media International Australia
  • Journal of Law and Medicine 
  • Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies
  • Accounting and Finance
  • Australasian Journal of Early Childhood
  • Australian Journal of Political Science
  • Australian Journal of Politics and History 
  • The Economic Record
  • Higher Education Research and Development
  • International Journal of Human Resources Management
  • Journal of Business Ethics
  • Journal of Writing and Writing Programs
  • University of New South Wales Law Journal
  • Journal of Industrial Relations
  • Corporate Ownership and Control
  • The Australian Educational Researcher
  • Journal of Business Research 
  • Australian Social Work
  • Economic Papers
  • Applied Economics
  • Alternative Law Journal
  • Australian Accounting Review
  • Journal of Sociology

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Staffing Profiles ERA 2015
HASS disciplines (12–22)*

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Horizontal bar chart showing staffing profiles for the below table of Field of Research (HASS disciplines 12–22) codes. All data from ERA 2015.

 

12 Built Environment and Design 18 Law and Legal Studies
13 Education 19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing
14 Economics 20 Language, Communication and Culture
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services 21 History and Archaeology
16 Studies in Human Society 22 Philosophy and Religious Studies

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Research Income ERA 2015
HASS disciplines (12–22)*

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 Horizontal bar chart showing percentage of income for the below table of Field of Research (HASS disciplines 12–22) codes. All data from ERA 2015.

12 Built Environment and Design 18 Law and Legal Studies
13 Education 19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing
14 Economics 20 Language, Communication and Culture
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services 21 History and Archaeology
16 Studies in Human Society 22 Philosophy and Religious Studies

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Importance of Humanities

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 Cover image: Mapping the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences in Australia (October 2014) document screenshot.

  • Produced by Australian Academy of the Humanities.
  • Co-funded by Department of Industry, Office of the Chief Scientist, Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.
  • Demonstrated that HASS in Australia makes a major contribution to the national research and innovation system.

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HASS interdisciplinary research

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Keywords: Asia, Asia Pacific, China, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam

A total of 8,031 research outputs were submitted to ERA 2012 that matched against the ‘Asia Knowledge’ keywords. As shown in Figure 1, research outputs were mostly related to the HASS disciplines with a total of 66.51% of all matches, while 33.49% of the matched outputs were from stem disciplines.

Figure 1: Proportion of research outputs related to ‘Asia Knowledge’ keywords for HASS and STEM fields of research.

Source: Australian Research Council, customised data.

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Keywords: Health, well being, public health Indigenous (and) health, aboriginal (and) health, Torres Strait Islander (and) health.

The total number of research outputs that match to the ‘Health’ keywords is 8,383 within the six-year reference period. Of these research outputs, 73.25% were assigned to FoRs within STEM disciplines with 26.75% assigned to HASS disciplines (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Proportion of research outputs related to ‘Health; keywords for STEM and HASS fields of research.

Source: Australian Research Council, customised data.

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HASS interdisciplinary research

 

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Figure 3: Number of research outputs apportioned to HASS disciplines by four-digit field of research for 'Asia knowledge' keywords.

This figure shows the number of research outputs apportioned to HASS FoRs for ‘Asia knowledge’ keywords. The five largest FoR codes are:
-Political Science (FoR 1606)
-Business and Management (FoR 1503)
-Applied Economics (FoR 1402)
-Law (FoR 1801)
-Historical Studies (FoR 2103).

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HASS interdisciplinary research 

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Figure 4: Number of research outputs apportioned to HASS disciplines by four-digit field of research for 'Health' keywords.

This figure shows the number of research outputs apportioned to HASS FoRs for ‘Health’ keywords.
The largest FoR code is Psychology (1701), however this discipline is considered to include both STEM and HASS research.
The next three largest FoR codes are:
-Sociology (FoR 1608)
-Policy and Administration (1605)
-Applied Economics (FoR 1402).

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Engagement and Impact

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2018 Engagement and Impact Assesement logo

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Engagement and Impact Assessment
Pilot assessment framework

Unit of Assessment

Engagement

Impact

Matrix of Metrics/

Indicators

Narrative

 

Impact Study

 

Rating for Engagement

Rating for Impact

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Humanities involvement in EI

  • Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences make up half the research disciplines
  • The voice of the Humanities has been represented through the consultation process, specifically:
    • on the EI Steering Committee and Working Groups
    • providing feedback to the ARC through public and targeted consultations
  • The pilot and full assessment activities will consider discipline and interdisciplinary aspects.

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Securing Australia’s Future

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Securing Australia's Future, Program reports—ACOLA publications screenshots.

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ARC funded humanities research, instances of international collaboration by country

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Instances of international collaboration with Asian countries in Humanities research. Countries' data includes Year and Field of Research within the Humanities discipline. Countries shown are: China, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, India, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, Korea, Timor-Leste, Cambodia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Bhutan, Laos, Mongolia, Bangladesh, Georgia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Uzbekistan.

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