ACUADS Annual General Meeting (3 Oct 2008)

Posted on 03 Oct 2008

The Chair, Su Baker, thanked Kay Lawrence and Staff, South Australia School of Art for acting as hosts of the 2008 ACUADS Conference.

The Chair thanked the Executive Committee, which has met regularly since being elected and noted that cost savings had been made by having some meetings by telephone.  She thanked the Executive Officer, Kay Morrissey and the Web Mistress, Kirsten Muir, for their contribution to the organization.

Su Baker acknowledged the contribution made to ACUADS by the retiring Executive members: Julian Goddard and Lyndon Anderson.

Su Baker also spoke on the retirement of herself, Elizabeth Grierson, Dom de Clario and Ian Howard, whose terms had expired, but noted that all had renominated, except herself as she remained on the Executive as Immediate Past Chair for one year.

The Chair reported that ACUADS principal areas of discussion and involvement over the past year had been:

Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA)

The ERA initiative is being developed by the Australian Research Council with advice from the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research.

Indicator Development Group, Creative Arts Sub-Committee

For many years ACUADS has played a significant role in the challenges, debates and evaluation of propositions around the nature and quality of research in the Creative Arts, in particular in Art and Design. As Chair of ACUADS, I was appointed as one of a six person Creative Arts Sub-Committee and welcome the opportunity to continue that participation in finding appropriate and discipline specific methods of evaluating high quality research outcomes in this field and to establish a productive and meaningful place for the creative arts in the research culture in Australia.

Future Proofing the Creative Arts in Higher Education: a scoping project for quality in creative arts research training (ALTC funded Project)

Project Leaders: Su Baker, Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne; and Brad Buckley, Sydney College of the Arts Graduate School, University of Sydney; and Project Manager Giselle Kett, Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne

This scoping project is an Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) funded initiative conducted in partnership between the Australian Council of University Art and Design Schools (ACUADS), the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA), University of Melbourne and the Sydney College of the Arts (SCA), University of Sydney.

The project aims to survey the current state of doctoral programs in the creative arts in Australian universities and to investigate corresponding programs in a sample of overseas universities. Key areas the study will address include: the structure of doctoral programs; expectations of supervision, coursework, and examination practices; multiple research outcomes produced; new knowledge evolving through these models of research; institutional support required; and the needs and expectations of research candidates.

Roundtable – Scoping for quality in tertiary creative arts research training

After some discussions with fellow ALTC and other Grant recipients, a Roundtable discussion was held at the VCA in Melbourne, 14 – 15 September 2008, to share the scope of the various projects and to find common areas of concern.

As the creative arts PhD becomes the defining benchmark of quality and innovation in the field, the graduates, artists/researchers, will be the academics of the future. Their experiences and the quality of their work will substantially determine the future shape of the higher education art and design sector. It is therefore a timely opportunity to build high quality performance into the next generation of creative arts academics.

There are considerable synergies appearing in the initial discussions and we are keen to develop these further.

Publication Section – ACUADS Web Site

ACUADS Publishing is the first iteration of a site that provides opportunities to disseminate research from the member institutions. It is hoped that this site will offer a service to Members.

ACUADS Publishing is a searchable archive of recent art, craft and design writing and research outcomes from ACUADS members who wish to present material, not published elsewhere, to the professional community.

We are pleased to offer this service and will be keen to have further discussions about the publishing possibilities for ACUADS.

For more information or to submit a proposal, please email

Australian Academy/Council of the Creative Arts

Discussions have been held with colleagues, art form groups, such as ASPERA, NACMUS and conference attendees and there has been unanimous support for the proposal to establish an Arts Academy.  The next step is to draft a proposal and circulate it within the industry for comment.

Changes to Constitution

The Deputy Chair, Noel Frankham outlined the proposed changes to Sections 8 and 9:

  • Bring the Constitution more clearly into line with efficient practice for electing Executive Committee members
  • Two year terms for Executive Committee membership
  • Office Bearers elected by Executive Committee
  • Office Bearers elected for period of their term
  • Any casual vacancy can be filled by Committee inviting an ACUADS member
  • Clearly define when an election would be needed i.e. only when nominations exceed vacancies.

Annual Subscription Policy Review

The Chair asked the meeting to endorse a 5% increase in membership fees for next year in line with the current policy, adopted at the 2004 Conference, that subscriptions should be indexed annually. This would make the fee schedule for 2008/2009 (GST included) as follows:

  • Under 250 EFTSL ($762)  = $800 (rounded)
  • Under 1000 EFTSL ($1,078)   = $1,132 (rounded)
  • Over 1000 EFTSL ($1,271)  = $1,335 (rounded)
  • Two Memberships ($2,542)  = $2,670 (rounded)
  • Affiliate (non-voting) 30% ‘Under 250 EFTSL’ Rate  = $240 (rounded)

Independent Audit Report 2007 – 2008

The meeting was advised that the Independent Audit Report and Statement of Financial Performance 2007/8, which had been handled by Melbourne auditor, Rod Hutton of UHY Haines, was unqualified and that we had ended the year with a credit balance of $14,409.

Yearly Comparison Statement of Financial Performance 2006/7

The Treasurer spoke to the Treasurer’s AGM Report noting that: our annual expenditure is considerably down on last year with the major reductions being: Web expenses almost halved and no costs for advertising and CHASS Membership costs and that income from Membership has remained constant.

Election of Executive – Roll-call

A list was circulated against which delegates recorded their name and institution as being in attendance.

Appointment of Returning Officer

Ms. Karen Paris, Conference Administrator, was appointed as Returning Officer together with the Executive Officer, Ms. Kay Morrissey.

The meeting noted that eight nominations had been received for the six vacancies on the ACUADS Executive Committee. This being the case, ballot papers were circulated and an election held with the following duly elected for two years:


Brogan Bunt, Wollongong
  • Gordon Bull, ANU
  • Paul Cleveland. Griffith
  • Domenico De Clario, Monash
  • Elizabeth Grierson, RMIT
Ian Howard, COFA

The newly elected members will join: the Immediate Past Chair, Su Baker and two continuing members, each due to retire at the next AGM, Noel Frankham and Clive Barstow.

The Executive agreed to meet immediately following the conclusion of the Annual General Meeting so that office bearers may be elected.

ACUADS Annual Conference 2009 – Brisbane

The meeting noted that the next conference will be held in Brisbane in 2009 with the dates to be confirmed at the next Executive meeting.

Any Other Business

Retirement of Chair, Su Baker

Noel Frankham spoke to the magnificient contribution made by Su Baker during her years as Chair of ACUADS and noted that Su would continue to participate on the Executive as the Immediate Past Chair for a further year.

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