The Bushfire CRC is “sound and robust”, with supportive and engaged stakeholders, a high quality research program, a cohort of leading international researchers and a clear vision for its future – that is the view in the final report from the Independent Review Panel on behalf of the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education.
Over three days in April 2012 the Panel reviewed a broad range of activities and structures within the Bushfire CRC.
The report with its recommendations will now be considered by the Governing Board of the Bushfire CRC at its next meeting on Tuesday 26 June in Adelaide. The Board will formally respond with details on how the recommendations will be implemented. The following day, Wednesday 27 June, all partners will have the opportunity to discuss the way forward from the review at the Stakeholder Meeting.
The Panel made four major conclusions on the performance of the Bushfire CRC. It said the Bushfire CRC:
1. Demonstrates sound governance and committee structures that effectively involve stakeholders, researchers and end users.
2. Has a high level of interaction between end users and researchers from determination of the scope of research projects through monitoring progress and in using results. It undertakes social and technical research of high quality that is valued by end users.
3. Manages research progress in a sound manner but with sufficient flexibility to take account of opportunities emerging during a research project.
4. Operates a successful post graduate program that supports students and integrates them into the work of the CRC and that of the CRC participants.
The Panel supported the proposal for the Bushfire CRC to extend its term by 12 months to June 2014, using existing Commonwealth funds with additional resources from partners.
Although the main research program would still conclude in June 2013, a limited set of activities would be possible beyond this date. This would allow greater scope to deliver “fourth year” impacts of the research projects, allow postgraduate students to complete their courses and provide more time to transition to an ongoing research institute with a new research program.
The full report is online at the link below.