PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS FOR E-LEARNING IN THE AUSTRALIAN CONTEXT: EMERGING ISSUES AND LESSONS FROM THE SWINBURNE UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY-SEEK PARTNERSHIP
Swinburne University of Technology (AUSTRALIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN11 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Changes to Government policy as an outcome of the 2008 Bradley Review of Australian Higher Education have provided significant new opportunities for growth in Australian universities.(1) From 2012, universities will be funded on the basis of student demand rather than by pre-set quotas. In line with the ambitions of many other OECD nations, the goal of Federal Government is to increase the proportion of 25-34 year old with undergraduate degrees from 32% to 40% by 2025.(2) The availability of new public funding for higher education has, for the first time, provided the resources for many Australian universities to pursue growth through expanding their e-learning programs. This increased funding coincides with social, demographic and technology trends that have resulted in a growing demand from mature aged students to study online. (3)Thus, the Australian context for e-learning may be characterised as a virtuous circle of public policy, resources, technology and market demand.
In January 2011, Swinburne University of Technology and SEEK announced an innovative public-private partnership for the delivery of high quality e-learning programs that has raised a number of cultural and commercial issues for the two partners. This paper describes the emerging issues and lessons learned by the partners, which include clearly establishing the joint shareholders’ contributions to and aims for the new venture and capitalising on the parties’ relative strengths and capabilities.
1. Australian Government. (2008). Review of Australian Higher Education. Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Canberra, Australia.
2. Australian Government. (2009). Transforming Australia’s higher Education System. Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Canberra, Australia.
3. Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, Digital Immigrants, accessed 19/04/2009. http://www.marcprensky.com/writing/Prensky%20-%20Digital%20Natives,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part1.pdf
Keywords: Public-private partnerships.