Dear colleagues,

The report of the Independent Review of UQ’s Integrity and Accountability Reform Program, and the Nous Group Findings Report on UQ’s workplace culture are available for you to read.

Independent Review of UQ’s Integrity and Accountability Reform Program

In 2012 UQ commissioned Emeritus Professor Gerard Sutton AO and Dr David Watson to independently review the Integrity and Accountability Reform Program.

Having introduced the program to strengthen the integrity and accountability of our processes and governance frameworks, we wanted to be sure that it was comprehensive and on the right track. We were open to advice on making it better.

Among other things, Professor Sutton and Dr Watson were asked to review all elements of the program and to advise on actions to further strengthen UQ’s reform initiatives and governance systems. In the course of their review, they interviewed a number of the University’s senior managers, before finalising their report independently.

UQ will now move to adopt the reviewers’ recommendations in full.

While observing that UQ is a positive academic environment, that staff are proud to be part of a leading university, and that our policies, procedures and organisational mechanisms are comprehensive, Professor Sutton and Dr Watson also highlight themes needing more attention.

We note, among other things, the comment that “staff believe the time for introspection has now passed ... it is now opportune to adopt improved decision making behaviours, ones which encourage open, honest and transparent behaviours and to be forward looking in the change process”.

We thank Professor Sutton and Dr Watson (see biographies below), whose insights will be highly valuable as UQ strives to be an even stronger institution. That is, an institution that is constituted of staff who feel that they work in a positive and supportive culture and who are committed to the University’s mission in learning, discovery and engagement.

We invite you to read the report of the Independent Review.

Nous Group Findings Report

In 2012 the University engaged the Nous Group to conduct an independent study of UQ’s workplace culture.

All fixed-term and continuing staff were invited to take part in a confidential online survey. In addition, 91 staff volunteered for focus groups; and 25 people held one-on-one discussions with Nous.

On 18 December 2012 we notified staff of the survey’s preliminary results and released an executive summary.

The results indicated that, while many people have very positive experiences working at UQ, too many report difficulties.

We are committed to using these results and a number of initiatives recommended by Nous to inform work that will improve the workplace experience of staff across UQ.

We are also committed to working with staff throughout the University to engender a workplace culture that supports affiliation, achievement and growth.

By making the Nous Group Findings Report available to you, we hope to stimulate thought and discussion ahead of a series of open sessions for staff at Gatton, Herston, Ipswich and St Lucia.

The way forward from the Nous Group Findings Report will be the focus of these sessions, but we also foresee them as opportunities for staff to raise other issues.

As seating is limited, we encourage you to register for these sessions, where we look forward to making progress towards a more constructive workplace culture that will benefit staff across UQ and create an even stronger university.

We invite you to read the Nous Group Findings Report.

Professor Peter Høj 
Vice-Chancellor and President

Professor Deborah Terry 
Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Biographies of independent reviewers

Emeritus Professor Gerard Sutton AO

Emeritus Professor Gerard Sutton AO held the post of Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wollongong from 1995 to 2011, making him one of Australia's longest serving university chiefs. Prior to becoming Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sutton, who is a former naval research scientist, was Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Wollongong. He was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2008 and was awarded an Australian Centenary Medal in 2001 for his contribution to tertiary education in Australia. Professor Sutton is also a past chair of Universities Australia, the peak body representing the university sector and its predecessor organisation the Australian Vice-Chancellors' Committee. The University of Wollongong has conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Science on Professor Sutton and admitted him as an Emeritus Professor.

Dr David Watson

Dr David Watson was a Commissioner for the Commission of Inquiry into Integrity Management Systems in the Queensland Racing Industry in 2004. As a former Queensland Member of Parliament (MP) he previously served as a member of the Parliamentary Criminal Justice Committee from 1992 to 1995. He is a former Professor of Accounting and Business Finance at UQ. He was also the Dean of the Faculty of Commerce and Economics at UQ for two terms - 1983-84 and 1988-89. He has also been a member of UQ Senate's Finance Committee. Dr Watson served in the Australian House of Representatives as MP for Forde (1984-87) and was elected Queensland MP for Moggill at the 1989 State election, becoming Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party until 1992. He was appointed a Parliamentary Secretary in 1996, becoming Minister for Public Works and Housing in 1997. He became Liberal Leader following the 1998 election and retired from politics at the 2004 election.

Dr Watson is on the Board of the Accounting Hall of Fame (USA), a member of the Board and chairs the Audit Committee of Major Brisbane Festivals Pty Ltd. He is Independent Chair of the Translational Research Institute board, and a member of the Board of the Queensland Competition Authority. He has also been a non-executive Director of Sun Retail Pty Ltd, Stanwell Corporation Limited and Sun Gas Retail Pty Ltd.

Professor Peter Høj
Vice-Chancellor and President
The University of Queensland
Brisbane Qld 4072
T: +61 7 33651300 | F: +61 7 33651266
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