NiTRO Creative Matters

Perspectives on creative arts in higher education

Research Engagement and Impact Pilot Report released

The Australian Research Council has released its report on the pilot exercise on research Engagement and Impact that took place this year in preparation for the changes expected in ERA 2018. Creative arts was one of the disciplinary groups that took part in the ‘Impact’ exercise.

The report clarifies the indicators that will be used to assess Engagement will be:

  • Cash support from end-users (against Higher Education Research Data Collection (HERDC)categories)
  • Total HERDC income per FTE (specified schemes)
  • End-user sponsored grants: proportion of HERDC Category
  • Research commercialisation income.

The definition of impact will be modified for the 2018 exercise to be:

Research impact is the contribution that research makes to the economy, society, environment and culture beyond the contribution to academic research.

The report contains a number of modifications that will be made for 2018 but in a number cases detailed advice on how these will be implemented is promised in time for the 2018 exercise. The report is available at:

It is anticipated that this will be a focus of discussion across the sector in 2018 and NiTRO invites articles that share experiences of the pilot, critiques of the model and discussion of institutional strategies for inclusion. Anyone interested in contributing to a special edition of NiTRO on this topic is invited to email NiTRO editor Jenny Wilson at

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