Are Australian universities fit for the future? How do they need to develop to ensure they support education and research needs in an uncertain future?

These question were addressed in the Future of Universities Thoughtbook | Australian Edition, which brings together 20 visions from invited professionals to create a vision for the future of universities and how they could potentially impact the world and their community over the next 21 years.

Initiated by the UIIN Australian Chapter, this edition of the Thoughtbook becomes a thought starter for the development of the Future-Oriented Australian University – a vision for the university by 2040 (University 4.0) whereby academics and students work in real time symbiotic partnerships with industry, government and societal stakeholders to simultaneously create and implement new knowledge and solutions to address business and social issues.



"Research will remain a fundamental element of the university. The interesting question is how much research will continue to drive change in our lives, underpinning the greater wealth and wellbeing enjoyed across most parts of the globe during the 20th Century."
Conor King
Executive Director of the Innovative Research Universities
"Universities will be the Jedi masters who teach us to look inward for the strengths we need to survive and adapt. Universities hone the skills that hold up best and are the hardest to automate: Critical thinking, curiosity, judgment, and willingness to challenge orthodoxy."
Catriona Jackson
CEO of Universities Australia
"Indeed, universities need to expand partnerships with industry across the board, looking for synergy in potential educational ecosystems, as well as sharpening their contribution to research and development."
Stephanie Fahey
CEO of Austrade


Dan Sleeman

ExU – a Learning (Design) Laboratory

Stephen Parker

A Transformed Future

Conor King

How Will the University Look in 2040?

Stephanie Fahey

The University in 2040 – Moving towards Education 4.0

Pratik Ambani

Future of International Education in Australia

Elisabeth Eastland

The Cambrian Explosion of Technology and Its Impact on Education

Kumar Parakala

 Harnessing Opportunities for Universities in the Digital Economy

Kylie Walker

Tech-Led Communities and Real-Time Virtual Learning

Richard Watson

Setting Forth on the 7Cs

 Steven Worrall

Digital Transformation – Universities in Change

Megan Lilly

2040: Skilling Ecospaces Driven by Partners in Social Workforce Plan

Sanjay Mazumdar

Re-defining University-Business Collaboration

John McGuire

Redefining the Town and Gown in 2040

Noel Lindsay

Facilitating Entrepreneurship in Communities to Augment University Engagement: Can This Wait for the Future?

Peter Rohan

Universities – Engagement or Irrelevance – in 2040

Leo Goedegebuure and V.  Lynn Meek

Reflections of a Vice-Chancellor

Will Grant

The More Things Change…?

Roy Green

Changing Idea of the University

Richard Head

Scale, Role and Purpose Matter

Catriona Jackson

University 2040


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