The Australian | 22 March 2013
Chris Bowen’s replacement as tertiary education minister will have the dubious distinction of being the fifth tertiary education minister in 15 months and the sixth with responsiblity for innovation and research.
Belinda Robinson, CEO Universities Australia told The Australian:
It’s a revolving door. They have responsibility for a significant part of the economy. We’ve heard a lot about resigning being the honourable thing to do personally and to the party. But we’ve heard nothing about what is the honourable thing to do for Australian society or the people and sectors they represent – the students, the academics and researchers.
Robinson said tertiary education seems to be in a permanent state of policy instability with key policies being eroded and key initiatives slipping between the cracks.
Simon Marginson, a professor of higher education at the University of Melbourne, said there was little interest in higher education in the ALP anymore.
It’s all about Gonski. Higher education is going into a holding pattern. No rabbit is going to be pulled out of the hat between now and September. Politically, higher education is a dead duck. It doesn’t matter who the next minister is.