MAJOR cuts to research funds at major Australian universities will be redirected to regional universities.
But the fact is, most regional universities will lose more under the 2017 funding freeze than they stand to gain with Monday’s further multi-million dollar slash to the big players.
A further $328.5 million will be ripped out of major Australian universities over the next four years.
“Our research income will be lower than budgeted for 2019 by about $250,000,” a University of New England spokeswoman said.
“This also sets a lower baseline for indexation of research income for future years.”
Regional students take up higher education at only half the rate of their metropolitan counterparts.
Armidale’s own university praises the federal government’s bid to improve attendance at regional universities.
But, it questions why additional funding has gone to funding more places in Melbourne’s eastern surburbs at Berwick and the University of Newcastle.
“At this stage, UNE along with several other regional universities have received no additional funding which is unfortunate,” the spokeswoman said.
“Not all of the funding has been allocated at this stage and we are waiting for a determination on our request to increase the number of places available for sub-degree and enabling courses.”
The budget raid on research is more than double what was expected by university scholars.
The University of New England finalised its budget in November for 2019.
Changing assumptions about its income just days before the budget took affect has left it in considerable uncertainty.
A large component of the funding isn’t directed to specific institutions so the university can’t estimate the indirect benefits going to UNE and its students.
The funding cuts mean scholarships for PhD students will be lost.