The HEEF: Economist’s interpretation

The Economist has an article on the Australian budget which was presented a few days ago. In my previous post I highlighted one item in that budget: the Higher Education Endowment Fund. In this fund, the government will deposit 5 billion Australian dollars, securing future funding of around 300 million a year (and more if the fund will grow in the future). The board of the fund will select ‘strategic investment proposals which provide quality infrastructure and support Australian Government policy with respect to diversity, specialisation and responsiveness to labour market needs’.

I though it was quite an innovative approach to government funding of higher education but this is all what the Economist makes of it:

“the budget offered A$5 billion for new research centres in Australia’s public universities”

Seems to me that there is quite a difference between the establishment of a fund (of which only the revenues can be spent) and ‘offering 5 billion dollars‘ and a difference between research centres and investments which provide ‘quality infrastructure and support Australian Government policy’.

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