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Curtin University
Note to staff

31 October 2016


Ranking updates

We are now nearing the end of the annual calendar of the release of University rankings.

I am delighted to advise that Curtin has been ranked in the top 10 in Australia by the Nature Index 2016 Australia and New Zealand supplement. The Nature Index examines the research output of Australian and New Zealand institutions and cities, and assesses the leading institutions by their contribution to 68 high-quality journals. Curtin was ranked ninth university in the top 30 Australian institutions and fifth for research output in Earth and Environmental Sciences. You can read more here.

I am also pleased to inform you that Curtin has been ranked equal 297th in the world in the US News and World Report’s Best Global Universities Ranking, a rise of 49 places from equal 346 last year. Curtin’s national rank is 12th, down from 11th last year. Curtin also featured in six out of 22 subjects, up from three last year.

Subject 2015 2016
Geosciences 72 66
Engineering =95 98
Social Sciences and Public Health =189 =177
Space Science Not ranked =190
Materials Science Not ranked 237
Chemistry Not ranked =293

Success in NHMRC grants

I am pleased to advise that Curtin has received Development Grant funding in the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grants. The funding of $414,000 is for an interdisciplinary project titled ‘Superior surgical fixation using a novel orthopaedic expandable fastener.’

The three-year project is led by Professor Markus Kuster (Faculty of Health Sciences) with Professor Garry Allison (ORD), Mr Matthew Oldakowski (Science and Engineering), and Professor Brett Kirk (ORD) partnering with the University of Western Australia, Royal Perth Hospital, St John of God Health Care and the University College London.

Curtin researchers have also been announced on a number of Centres of Research Excellence.

  • Professor Judith Finn (School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine) working with Monash University on the Centre of Research Excellence in Prehospital Emergency Care.
  • Associate Professor Anne Smith and Professor Peter O’Sullivan (School of Physiotherapy and Exercise Science), working with University of Melbourne on the Centre for Research Excellence in Total Joint Replacement
  • Dr Catherine Elliott (School of Occupational Therapy and Social Work), working with University of Queensland on the Australasian Cerebral Palsy Clinical Trials Network

Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering Fellowship

Congratulations to John Curtin Distinguished Professor Hong Hao of the Department of Civil Engineering who has been elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE). This prestigious fellowship reflects the contributions that Professor Hao has made in the field of structural dynamics. His strong international standing is evident in his publications, his leadership positions in professional committees, and the fact that his services have been sought by many government agencies and industrial organisations globally.

David Aldous Student of the Year Award

Congratulations to Curtin PhD student, research assistant and sessional academic Isaac Middle, who was awarded the Parks and Leisure Australia David Aldous Student of the Year award in Adelaide on 24 October. Isaac has been completing a PhD in Planning, with a focus on the use of Public Open Space. Enrolled in the School of Built Environment, he has undertaken his studies within the Centre for Sport and Recreation Research.

Curtin staff member in Antarctic expedition

Dr Nina Schuback, from the Remote Sensing and Satellite Research Group within Curtin’s Department of Physics and Astronomy, will be among 55 scientists from 30 countries who will work on 22 research projects for the Antarctic Circumnavigation Expedition. The three-month expedition aboard the Akademik Treshnikov, a Russian research vessel, departs late December and Dr Schuback will be examining the abundance and composition of phytoplankton in the Southern Ocean.

Congratulations to Dr Schuback for her inclusion in this important initiative.  More information is available here.

Curtin PhD student meets with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Geneva trip

I would like to highlight the inspiring work of Curtin University Sustainability Policy Institute (CUSP) PhD student Carina Hoang, who has just returned from a trip to Geneva, Switzerland, spending 10 days working at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) archive and the UN library to gather materials for her thesis, which focuses on the history of Vietnamese refugees in Hong Kong from 1975 to 2000.

During the trip Carina attended the UNHCR’s Annual Nasen Refugee Award event, and met with the UN’s Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. A former Vietnamese refugee, Carina is an award-winning author and is the Special Representative for Australia for UNHCR.  She recently initiated a fundraising effort among the Vietnamese community across Australia to support UNHCR, which raised half a million dollars in two months.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon greets special guest Carina Hoang.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon greets special guest Carina Hoang.

Curtin’s ePAT publicly listed

ePAT Technologies, the company behind a facial recognition and pain management app developed by Professor Jeff Hughes, Dr Kreshnik Hoti and Mustafa Atee from Curtin’s School of Pharmacy, has been publicly listed. Shares in ePAT Technologies commenced trading on 19 October. Curtin has sold its 16 per cent stake in ePAT and has entered into a research agreement for the next two years. For more information please see the article on Business News.

2016 Curtin University Media Awards

I have the pleasure of inviting you to attend the Curtin University Media Awards on Thursday 17 November.  These annual awards recognise our academic staff who have made an outstanding contribution to raising the University’s share of positive media voice over the preceding 12 months. The event will provide an opportunity to celebrate and network with other Curtin academics who are engaging with the media. You can register to attend here.

Curtin Charity Golf Day supports the Amanda Young Foundation

Following the tragic passing of a Curtin student from meningococcal disease recently, I would like to make you aware of the University’s upcoming Charity Golf Day event on Friday 25 November. After working closely with organisation founders Barry and Lorraine Young, Curtin Stadium has partnered with the Amanda Young Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to reducing deaths in WA from meningococcal disease. The event combines Curtin’s annual Golf Day with a garden party event, lifestyle auction, refreshments, food and entertainment, with all funds raised going to the Foundation. More information can be found here.



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