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VU wins $1.4 million in ARC funding

Victoria University has won $1.38 million in Australian Research Council (ARC) Grants for four projects, including nearly $280,000 for a Discovery Indigenous project led by Aboriginal historian, activist, and academic, Professor Gary Foley.

Professor Foley and Dr Clare Land of VU’s Moondani Balluk Indigenous Academic Unit, will embark on a four-year project to chart the extraordinary history of the closure and eventual re-opening of Northland Secondary College (1992-1995), a school in Melbourne’s north. At the time, Northlands had one of the highest Indigenous student populations of any secondary school in Victoria.

The episode is well known to Melbourne Aboriginal communities, and despite its historical, political, legal, and sociological significance, it is largely overlooked in scholarly accounts. The project will provide scholarly research resources and analysis, and culturally appropriate accounts of the school’s history.

ARC Discovery projects

Other funding has been granted for research in the following areas.

Life-worlds of Year Four students

Led by Professor Nicola Yelland, a $321,000 study will investigate how everyday life-worlds of Year Four students (ages 9-10) in Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore shape children’s orientations to educational success. With research from Melbourne, Sydney, Hong Kong and Singapore, the three-year study will explore connections between policy contexts, school experiences, and everyday activities of children growing up in the Asian Century. Its findings will assist policy-makers, educators and parents better understand how children's experiences in and out of school prepare them for futures in a global world.

Outsourcing data storage

Chief Investigator Professor Hua Wang of VU’s Centre for Applied Informatics and his team will examine the increasingly common practice of outsourcing data storage, which poses major problems for data use and confidentiality. The $378,000 three-year project aims to discover how tuples (data structures) in fragments can be grouped to increase the utility of queries executed over fragments. The project will create a framework that satisfies information-protection goals, while achieving utility for queries. The results will benefit Australians by enabling increasingly large datasets to be shared securely and cheaply.

Innovative methods in economic modelling

Professors Peter Dixon and Don Harding from VU’s Centre of Policy Studies (CoPS) were awarded $405,000 for a three-year project to introduce innovative methods to economic modelling and overcome computational barriers associated with household and investor expectations. The outcome will be economic models that include sophisticated rational expectations specifications, while retaining considerable industry, regional, and occupational disaggregation. The project will benefit economic policy by broadening the range of questions that can be answered by detailed models, as well as the research community by providing a platform for examining dynamics in large-scale economic systems.

Funding highlights VU research

Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research and Research Training, Professor Warren Payne said today’s ARC funding announcement highlighted the depth and breadth of exciting research taking place across Victoria University.

“On behalf of VU, I congratulate our winners and wish them success with their projects,” he said. “This funding will assist projects that will make a difference to many communities – locally, nationally and around the world.”

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