Change is endemic in universities. Researchers interrogate existing theories to devise new solutions, and teaching staff impart knowledge and ideas to students who, in turn, debate issues and seek new knowledge – all to effect positive change in communities locally and abroad. A change of government invariably brings change for universities, too, with priorities for higher education adapting to meet the shifting demands of the global economic and social climate.
Change is implicit in Curtin’s strategic plan, under which the University has been operating since the start of 2013. To be a recognised international leader in research and education requires dynamic people, groundbreaking research, innovative teaching methods and more intimate ways to engage with communities. Curtin is fortunate to have these attributes upon which to further develop.
At Curtin Business School, researchers have investigated the housing priorities people have and what’s needed to bring about change in the urban landscape to ensure their wellbeing and that of the environment.
Associate Professor Ben Mullins and his team in the School of Public Health have developed the first simulated model of a breathing lung. In ‘A breath of fresh air’, read about how this important technology will enable more targeted treatment for the many sufferers of asthma and chronic respiratory illnesses.
Also in health sciences, Western Australia’s first Professor of Midwifery, Yvonne Hauck, is guiding midwifery research for the future, encouraging a new generation of midwives to embed research into their clinical work.
Curtin alumnus and Australia Awards Scholarship recipient Ahmad Agus Setiawan is putting his PhD into practice, installing his award-winning technology to deliver power and water to remote communities in Indonesia.
Our cover story on Julian Donaldson exemplifies the longstanding contribution Curtin alumni make to community. The ever-evolving Perth International Arts Festival continues to grow in size and stature, thanks in no small part to its general manager, who has been in the role since 2005.
In closing, Curtin welcomes Professor Deborah Terry as its new Vice- Chancellor in February 2014. The University has prospered under the leadership of Professor Jeanette Hacket AM, who retired from the position in August. Indeed, it has been my great privilege as Acting Vice-Chancellor since then to steer Curtin further along the path of evolution to the greater success we can look forward to with Professor Terry at the helm.
Greetings to you and your families for the holiday season.
Professor Colin Stirling