The Australian National University (ANU) is an education-intensive research institute of international distinction.
Our level of performance has continued through 2008, notwithstanding the turbulence in the world’s financial markets and our consequential deficit for 2008. The deficit is due to accounting treatments recognizing the effect on our investments of the decline in all markets. Our investments are designed to cover long-term liabilities – extending beyond 2050 – and we have had no need to crystallise substantial losses.
It has not been our practice to use investment returns in the good years to expand our recurrent budget; only a very small amount has ever been transferred for recurrent use. Consequently, through 2008, our operation has been largely unaffected.
We are committed to achieving research outcomes of the highest standard in fields of knowledge of general importance, and of particular importance to Australia.
We do very well overall – in teaching and in research – and work constantly to improve.
Apart from our high ranking in international league tables – an honour of sometimes questioned worth – we scrutinise our activities closely and in detail.
This Annual Report highlights some of the continuing achievements of our people – staff and students – in 2008.