We are a consulting and policy advisory organization established to encourage collaboration and advisory services to support ongoing productivity of the higher education sector. The impetus came from applied research that was aimed at learning more about how efficiency operated in higher education sectors in Australia, the US and the UK.
The independent creation of the REEF Index is a key element of HERG’s work. The REEF Index provides a point of reference for policy and strategy that both describes efficiency and compares: institutions with their own efficiency previous position, against other institutions, and against a “frontier” of efficiency in the sector.
Additionally it supports a broader and deeper understanding of the efficiency and productivity of the sector as a whole – possibly described as the higher education ‘ecosystem’.
This innovative tool is agnostic as to any particular mix of Education and Research that each institution chooses and so for the first time allows analysis to be undertaken that takes those variations between institutions into account.
HERG seeks to make a contribution to public discussion about: Efficiency within the higher education sector Research and Education policy Global efficiency trends in higher education.
HERG also works with university executives to create strategies to increase institutional efficiency.
The REEF Index is an innovative and comprehensive whole of sector approach to measuring efficiency (productivity):
The Higher Education Research Group undertakes projects and provides services in a range of areas and some of these are listed below:
HERG has undertaken research on broad higher education efficiency issues. The “Efficiency Frontier” analysis in particular as a “new” analysis has profound implications for how whole sectors are structured, evaluated and funded / rewarded.
HERG has undertaken reviews of institutions to examine and make recommendations about Research and Education related effectiveness and efficiency. In terms of the REEF Index, there is a range of other applications for this methodology.
HERG can provide information and analysis to Government, based on overall efficiency, relative to each institution, or groups of institutions, and to others rather than just scale or capacity. Government may seek to have efficiency measures that are not just cash flow based. Seeking genuine underlying efficiency may be seen a better targeted mechanism to give effect to public policy settings.
HERG is regularly called upon to provide public commentary. HERG work has been cited in the Australian Parliament (Hansard Senate 6 September 2017 page 26) as a contribution to the understanding of “real productivity opportunities” for Australian higher education. The Minister of Education – Senator Simon Birmingham – has described the work as “ground breaking” (reported in Australian Financial Review August 28th 2017).
READ OUR REEF INDEX POWERPOINT PRESENTATION
READ OUR SUBMISSION TO THE PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY INTO FUNDING AUSTRALIA'S RESEARCH
SENATE INQUIRY UNIVERSITY FUNDING HERG SUBMISSION 9 SEPTEMBER 2020
WATCH OUR VIDEO ON REEF INDEX
WATCH OUR 2021 AHEIA PRESENTATION
Key Explainer Documents on the REEF Index
The Explainer series has been developed by the Higher Education and Research Group to describe and discuss key issues relevant to the measuring of university productivity. They are updated from time to time and represent working documents aimed at providing a greater understanding of matters relevant to productivity benchmarking and assessment matters.