Higher education needs a back-to-the future evolution, according to Australian Catholic University vice-chancellor Greg Craven, who says a universities commission could redress problems in universities' "mega-governance", reports The Australian.
Professor Craven said the overarching governance of the sector had evolved in a largely random way, with "natural regulation creep" as universities increased their reliance on federal funding.
"We've got to the point where it's not set towards diversity or innovation, it's set towards compliance and uniformity," he said.
"But the creation of (the higher education quality agency) TEQSA, which is a much more coherent, reasoned approach to governance, (allows us) to think about mega-governance in a more nuanced way. It's the first time we've got something up there that is the can on top of the hill."
Professor Craven said TEQSA was a "natural and beneficial evolution" that hadn't reached its logical conclusion. He said a universities commission-style body could encourage heterogeneity.
"You could have the best of both worlds - you could ensure compliance with quality, but (also drive) other values like diversity and innovation."
FULL STORY Universities commission needed, says ACU chief (Australian)