The Australian Historical Association, which is the peak national organisation of historians, has serious concerns about the changes recently announced by Stuart Robert, Acting Minister for Education and Youth, in relation to the Australian Research Council (ARC).
Our objections, in the first place, concern the absence of consultation about these changes. The announcement is surprising and without due respect for stakeholders.
The proposal to repurpose funds to government commercialisation goals in fields such as manufacturing represents a serious threat to the funding of historical research. There are multiple schemes already in place for funding research into these government priority areas. The redirection of already limited funds administered by the ARC to purposes already being served by other large funding pools and schemes has no justification.
See the full statement here.