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AUSTRALIA COUNCIL IS PARTNER IN $4.7M BOOST TO NEW ARTS RESEARCH

The Australia Council for the Arts will be an industry partner in three prestigious arts-related research projects funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC).

The new successful ARC Linkage grants – with a combined value of $4.7 million – were announced on Wednesday 15 October 2008.

The Australia Council chief executive officer Kathy Keele said: ‘The Australia Council is delighted to be associated with these important initiatives. The three research projects will increase our understanding on how technology and culture can bring people together; the role of the arts in improving school attendance rates and instilling greater satisfaction with school life; and help prevent injuries amongst our top musicians’.

The first project, worth $2.1 million over five years, will offer new perspectives on the use of public space and provide a model for future cross-cultural big screen events. The ‘large screens research project’ is a partnership between Melbourne’s Federation Square, the Art Centre Nabi in Seoul and the Australia Council for the Arts, with research being undertaken by the University of Melbourne and the Australia Council.

The second project, worth $1.1 million over three years, will examine and test the potential of arts education to increase Australian students’ motivation and achievement in schools. Findings will help better direct funding and policy to arts education that makes a real difference in the lives of children and young people. The University of Sydney and the Australia Council will carry out this research.

The  Australia Council will also participate on the steering committee of a new ARC-funded research project which will produce new knowledge about musician health, well-being, injury prevention and management. This five-year, $1.5m project, will be led by the University of Sydney in partnership with the Australian professional orchestral network. This landmark research will establish the first injury surveillance system for orchestral musicians and will lead to effective OH & S policies for the industry.

The grants acknowledge the Australia Council’s growing role as a knowledge centre on the arts which is one of the six strategic priorities for the organisation.

Recently, the Australia Council announced the appointment of Dr Nick Herd to the newly-created position of director, research and strategic analysis. This role will further strengthen the organisation’s research profile.

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