VC's Update - Vale Professor Patrick Troy AO

27 July 2018

Hi everyone,

I start today's blog with some sad news. Emeritus Professor Patrick Troy AO, one of the nation's great researchers and a true giant of this University, has passed away. Pat has long been acknowledged as the country's leading thinker in the field of urban policy and is the author of many influential works relating to urban and regional policy. He was a great mentor and friend to many students and staff from across the University and we extend our deepest condolences to his family. He will be greatly missed.

On Monday, alumnus Craig Edwards presented the University with the largest gift of Indigenous artwork to an Australian university. The collection comprises works by many influential Indigenous artists and is worth more than $9 million. This was an inspiring act of philanthropy to share this wonderful collection with our community which now rivals some of the best collections in Australia. This collection, gathered over a 30 year period, is a visual history of Australia and I am proud for ANU to be the custodian of this artwork.

Over the last 12 months, under the leadership of Professor Jacqueline Lo, the Academic Board has produced a Statement of Academic Freedom which builds on our Code of Conduct, recognising academic freedom as a key pillar underpinning everything that we do. For us to continue to stand among the great universities of the world we must continue to protect academic freedom within the University to enable the pursuit of knowledge and the exploration of challenging and new ideas that are fundamental to our purpose. I thank Jacquie and the Academic Board for their work in producing this statement.

Earlier today I attended the launch of the ACT Government's Canberra Space Prospectus where I welcomed a $250,000 investment from the ACT Government in the Advanced Instrumentation Technology Centre's national facility for space flight testing. The opportunity to establish an advanced Australian space industry capability requires a truly national effort. We are a small population and we need to unite our efforts around key facilities and centres of expertise. ANU, as the national university, is well placed to bring together talent and resources from across the country and internationally to boost Australia's space effort. This is welcome news for the sector.

I am also delighted to announce that Dr Su-Ann Tan has been appointed Director of the ANU Singapore Liaison Office. The Singapore Liaison Office, based at the Australian High Commission, will act as the South East Asian hub for the University.

Next week, the inaugural Foundation Day Lecture will be held to celebrate the University's birthday. We will be welcoming the Hon Susan Ryan AO and the Hon Peter Baume AC to deliver a joint address on gender equality and age discrimination. I look forward to seeing you at the event. Don't forget to register here.

I would like to congratulate the ten ANU researchers who have been nominated for the 2018 Eureka Prizes. This is the largest number of nominations ANU has received in one year, and I am delighted that our researchers are being recognised across Engineering, Physics, Technology, Biology and Chemistry. 

Finally, I would like to remind everyone to please, please, please change your passwords by 31 July to avoid being locked out of all ANU systems. To change your password, please search for 'Identity Manager' on the ANU website where step-by step-instructions can be found. Remember, ANU will never send you a link to change your password. I know it's an inconvenience but it's important for a whole number of reasons.

Have a good weekend,