In 2020, the Australian Research Council (ARC) is undertaking a comprehensive review of Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) and the Engagement and Impact Assessment (EI). 

The purpose of the review is enable the ARC to:

  • simplify and streamline the programs
  • take advantage of recent developments in technology and big data
  • ensure the programs continue to reflect world’s best practice and
  • respond to the ongoing needs of the university sector, government and the public for a robust evaluation of Australian university research quality, impact and engagement.

For more information on the review, please contact the ARC via email: ERAEIReview@arc.gov.au or the ERA Helpdesk: 02 6287 6755.

Upcoming Public Consultation

The ERA EI Review will open for public consultation for eight weeks in mid-August 2020. A consultation paper will be made available on this website which will contain questions regarding key issues for the review. To aid submissions, a link to the questions in a survey will also be published. 

Terms of Reference

The Review will consider:

  • the purpose and value of research evaluation, including how it can further contribute to the Government’s science, research and innovation agendas
  • the extent to which ERA and EI are meeting their objectives to improve research quality and encourage university research engagement and impact outside of academia
  • the effects of both ERA and EI on the Australian university research sector, whether positive or negative, intended or unintended
  • opportunities to streamline the ERA and EI processes to reduce the reporting burden on the research sector (as recommended by the House of Representatives Report, Australian Government Funding Arrangements for non-NHMRC Research) noting the guiding principles of ERA and EI are:
    • robust and reliable methodologies
    • applicability of the methodologies across disciplines
  • opportunities for coordination of research data reporting and analysis across government, thereby improving whole-of-government reporting capability and reducing the reporting burden on universities
  • publicly available data sources and new developments in technology and products to capture research evaluation data
  • the frequency of ERA and EI
  • the appropriateness and robustness of the ERA and EI methodologies.

ERA EI Review Advisory Committee 

As part of undertaking the review of ERA and EI, the ARC has appointed an external, expert Advisory Committee comprising experts from government, universities and research end-users, as well as experts in research evaluation to advise the ARC CEO on key issues.

The role of the ERA and EI Advisory Committee (the Committee) is to provide guidance, on key issues for consideration with recommendations for the future rounds of ERA and EI. 

The Committee is chaired by Professor Michael Brooks, Acting Vice-Chancellor and President, The University of Adelaide.

The members of the Committee are:

  • Professor Michael Brooks (Chair), Acting Vice-Chancellor and President, The University of Adelaide
  • Mark Bazzacco, Director of Strategy and Chief of Staff, CSIRO 
  • Professor Joy Damousi, Director, Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, Australian Catholic University
  • Dr Gemma Derrick, Senior Lecturer (Higher Education), Lancaster University
  • Dominic English, First Assistant Secretary, Higher Education Division, Department of Education, Skills and Employment
  • Dr Alan Finkel AO, Chief Scientist for Australia
  • Catriona Jackson, Chief Executive, Universities Australia
  • Professor Anne Kelso AO, Chief Executive Officer, National Health and Medical Research Council
  • Su McCluskey, Commissioner, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research
  • Professor  Emeritus Ian O’Connor AC, Chair of the Higher Education Standards Panel 
  • Emeritus Professor John O’Connor, Conjoint Professor, School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, The University of Newcastle
  • Dr Mathew Trinca AM, Director, National Museum of Australia
  • Jane Urquhart, Head of Division, Science and Commercialisation Policy, Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
  • Professor Maggie Walter, Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Previous Pro Vice-Chancellor Aboriginal Research and Leadership, University of Tasmania 
  • Innes Willox, Chief Executive, The Australian Industry Group