Hunter Valley industry supports the humanities

Friday, 6 October 2017


A board of six local industry representatives is supporting the Centre for 21st Century Humanities, delivering advice and guidance to ensure the Centre delivers impact and engagement locally.

The board includes a lawyer, a creative industries entrepreneur, a Director of the Williamtown Aerospace Centre, representatives from Renew Newcastle and the Newcastle Writers Festival along with other creatives and UoN academics to assist in the ongoing development of the Centre for 21st Century Humanities.

Director of the Centre, Professor Hugh Craig, said the board brings a different viewpoint to the Centre.

“They’re greatly enthusiastic about the humanities and have the ability to see many more business possibilities than we can coming from an academic background,” he said.

Director of the Williamtown Aerospace Centre, James Garvey, is a board member and says it’s been a good chance to engage with the Centre and provide a commercial perspective.

“Some of the advice we’ve offered is around the speed with which things tend to happen in industry. You need to be agile and jump on opportunities when they arise, so decentralising decision-making was one thing,” he said. “Also monetising popular public websites such as the Colonial Massacres map website. With over 28 million views it’s the perfect place to add a donation button.”

Board member Christopher Saunders of Renew Newcastle says it’s extremely important that connections are made between the university and industry.

“Our regional position means that we are not as well placed as big city based institutions to have access to diverse industry opportunities. Collaborating with industry is also important in terms of opportunities and retention of talent and skills in the region upon graduation. At a time when Newcastle is undergoing massive investment, redevelopment and potential population growth, coupled with the university re-positioning itself in the city, the importance to integrate with existing industry and encourage further collaboration will have mutual benefits,” he said.

The board will hold their next meeting in December.