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March 11, 2013 | by  | in News |
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Could Be Worse

At least we’re solvent

victoria University was the worst-performing of new zealand’s five major universities in 2010, the latest annual report of a major tertiary funding mechanism shows. The 2010 annual report of the Performance Based research Fund (PBrF)—a funding body which aims to ensure high-quality research is conducted and duly rewarded—shows Victoria received $23,217,071 from the PBRF in 2010, leaving it behind the University of Auckland, University of Otago, Massey University and Canterbury University. Victoria’s 2010 allocation was an 8.05 per cent increase on their 2009 allocation of $21,487,098. The PBRF allocates $250 million of funding between new zealand’s
tertiary institutions, using formulae which quantify the value of research produced at each institution. Institutions are funded on the basis of performance.

The three components which make up the total funding allocation are Quality Evaluation, an assessment of the quality of the institutions’ research; External research Income, a proxy measure for research quality; and research Degree Completions, the number of Masters and PhD programmes completed.
The formulae rank subjects by their perceived value, with Medicine and Engineering favoured over other subjects. victoria, without strong Medicine or Engineering programs, is disadvantaged by this system. The report also showed victoria had 75 doctoral completions in 2009, and 237 Masters completions. These figures, both approximately one-tenth of the New Zealand totals, roughly align with victoria’s share of the total PBRF funding pool.

In March, Victoria was accused of changing staff ’s employment arrangements in order to obtain a higher PBRF ranking. An independent investigation found the allegations had no grounds.

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