MAY 2020

In the midst of the continuing challenges and difficulties arising from COVID-19, I am delighted to be able to share some positive news.

Griffith University, in partnership with Victoria University, has been granted an $11 million donation from the Paul Ramsay Foundation – with half of this funding coming to Griffith it is the largest single philanthropic donation in the University’s history. The five-year project will involve working alongside Brisbane’s Logan and Melbourne’s Brimbank communities to co-develop ways to break cycles of disadvantage. Through an interdisciplinary approach of Griffith expertise from Health, Psychology, Criminology and Education, our researchers will work closely with the community to co-design projects to improve education, social and health outcomes for children and young adults in these regions. A community voice is at the heart of this exciting initiative, recognising that the community itself is the expert at identifying local challenges, strengths and offering answers to what’s required to stop the cycle of disadvantage.

Supported by a further generous award of over $1M by the Paul Ramsay Foundation, Griffith will collaborate with Queensland Corrective Services on an important new project looking to transform the lives of mothers in custody and their children. Mothers in custody and their children are among the most vulnerable and difficult to reach groups in society. Women are the fastest growing segment of Australia’s prison population and although there are no nationwide figures on the number of mothers in prison, estimates show more than half have dependent children aged 15 and under, while 85% of women entering prison have been pregnant at some stage in their lives. This project will draw on Griffith’s world leading research strengths in both criminology and criminal justice, and nursing and midwifery, to help a sector of the community which is often invisible. This project seeks to break the cycle of incarceration, create conditions for families to thrive, and demonstrate more effective, sustainable service provision.

In further good news, the Australian Research Council has announced the outcomes of the 2019 Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Projects for applications submitted between 27 November 2019 and 19 December 2019. Linkage grants are competitive grants that are provided to universities working with industry, community and other partners. Griffith University was successful with six applications, bringing the total amount awarded in the 2019 round to $2,410,727. Griffith was ranked 9th overall for number of grants and funded amount awarded. The challenges of the 21st century are many and complex and these awards provide testimony to Griffith expertise in providing research solutions to humankind’s greatest challenges and working with partners towards shared goals. The funded projects range in nature from ‘Supporting teachers and teaching in flexible and non-traditional schools’, to ‘Constructing Building Integrity: Raising standards through professionalism’, and ‘Exploring the Role and Outcomes of Employee Voice in a Hospital Setting’.

With COVID-19 situation continuing to evolve and dominate our day to day lives, we are pleased to be moving to a phase whereby gradually over the next few months we will be able to return to campus operations, and once again provide a rich campus experience for our students and partners. We are very much looking forward to seeing the vibrancy of campus life return and to welcoming our students in person.

These are undoubtedly hard times, but I am proud to be able to congratulate the success of our Griffith researchers. My best wishes to you and your families and I look forward to seeing you in person in happier times.

Carolyn Evans

Vice Chancellor and President

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