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Supporting the enhancement of Australasian higher education

Australasian higher education institutions are renowned as forward-thinking global leaders, whether in acknowledging Indigenous perspectives, fostering sustainability or innovating with AI.

In our interconnected global landscape, collaboration is crucial for sharing insights and addressing challenges within higher education across diverse economic, cultural and societal contexts. 

Advance HE is committed to supporting you on this journey by helping to enhance your world-class reputation in higher education.

How can we help?

We help higher education organisations be the best they can be by unlocking the potential of their people. We’ve been partnering with higher education organisations in Australasia for 10 years to provide better outcomes for your staff and students.

Advance HE and SAGE womens leadership event
Some of the participants of Advance HE and SAGE Women’s leadership event at Edith Cowan University.

By listening and responding to you, our members in Australasia, we’ve developed the support you need to maintain and enhance your rightful position as global leaders in higher education and research.

Get in touch

Lift accreditation event at CQUniversity Rockhampton North
Advance HE Chief Executive Alison Johns, CQUniversity's Associate Lecturer Marie Foreman, UniSQ's Associate Professor Ian Davis, and CQUniversity's Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Klomp
Dr Lauren Woodlands and Francis Nona
Dr Lauren Woodlands and Francis Nona, Program Leads for the Associate Fellow (Indigenous Knowledges) award at Queensland University of Technology.


With more than 430 members worldwide, global perspectives are embedded into all the work that we do. Higher education institutions in Australasia are global leaders and we help you to share the impact of your work and how it contributes to shared global challenges.

  • 34 members across the Australasian region
  • 18 of which are Global and Strategic members, managing their own Advance HE accredited programs and awarding Fellowship on our behalf. 

Member benefits

Our membership program is designed to support the success of institutions, staff and students. Every employee has access to member benefits, across Learning and Teaching, Governance, Leadership and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. In addition to working with members on shared global challenges, we’re developing a number of projects focusing on areas that Australasian members have told us are priorities, including:

  • Enabling access and progression through Education Development Curricula
  • Learning and Teaching Reward, Recognition and Progression Excellence
  • Responding to the Fair Work Act: Prevention of sexual harassment
  • Equal pay reporting and pay-gap transparency
  • Inclusive Leadership.
Find out more about Member Benefits


Advance HE Fellowship demonstrates a commitment to professionalism and provides recognition of practice, impact and leadership in learning and teaching. 

•    7,358 Fellowships in Australia
•    7,971 Fellowships across the Australasian region

Almost 8,000 individuals in Australasia have been recognised for their learning and teaching practice with Advance HE Fellowship. Fellowship demonstrates alignment with internationally benchmarked good practices which are interpreted to your local context.

We've been working in partnership with institutions in Australasia for 10 years to recognise staff for their learnng and teaching support, including the accreditation of an Indigenous Associate Fellowship, offered by Queensland University of Technology (QUT). 

Senior and Principal Fellowship Support Programme Asia-Pacific

We have developed specialist virtual programmes to support individuals as part of a cohort to achieve either Senior or Principal Fellowship, with courses running at suitable times for Australasian time zones.

Find out more about Fellowship
Advance HE has continued to develop an important range of work supporting institutions in Australasia. This work is informed by consultation with members as well as by ASAB.

Professor Shaun Ewen, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education), Griffith University and ASAB member. 

We created the world-first accredited specialist award of Associate Fellow (Indigenous Knowledges). The impact of our award-winning program can be seen in nearly 200 staff across Australia recognised with this specialist award for their work.

Dr Lauren Woodlands and Francis Nona, program leads for the Associate Fellow (Indigenous Knowledges) award at QUT.

Professor Liz Johnson and Professor Shaun Ewen
Professor Liz Johnson (L), Deputy Vice Chancellor at Deakin University. Professor Shaun Ewan (R), Deputy Vice Chancellor at Griffith University. Both are members of Advance HE Australasian Strategic Advisory Board.
Professor Polly Parker and Jennifer Witheriff
Professor Polly Parker (L), University of Queensland and Jennifer Witheriff (R), GJR Consulting are our co-leads for Aurora, Australia.

SAGE Athena Swan

SAGE (Science in Australia Gender Equity) is the only gender equity and diversity program of its kind in Australia. It administers the Athena Swan framework in Australia with support from Advance HE’s International Charters team. We’ve worked closely with SAGE and with the sector since 2015 to deliver an accreditation pathway that’s tailored to your national context.

Find out more about SAGE Athena Swan

Aurora Australia

Aurora is our leadership development initiative for women which more than 10,000 women in HE have completed across the UK and Ireland since it began 10 years ago.

Working in partnership with people with localised insight and expertise, we’ve tailored Aurora to meet the needs of the Australian HE context to support tertiary institutions to attain their strategic gender equity goals.

Find out more about Aurora
I am delighted that two of our SAGE Cygnet Awards on inclusive culture and flexible work arrangements have been successful. Having recently come from the UK where the Athena Swan Charter is well-established, I understand the importance of this evidence-based, data-driven framework in creating a workplace where everyone feels welcome, safe, supported, respected at work, and has the same opportunities for development and success.

Professor John Greenwood, Director, Baker Institute.

We’ve studied the action plans that many universities here in Australia have produced to tackle this gender disparity, and it’s clear they see the need for leadership development programs specifically for women. They see such support as a key way of creating a pipeline of women leaders equipped, from the early stages of their leadership journeys, with the skills, networks and knowledge to progress to the most senior leadership levels.

Professor Polly Parker, The University of Queensland and co-lead for Aurora Australia.

Sharing your good practice - Global Impact Grants

In 2023, we awarded Global Impact Grants to The University of Adelaide, Curtin University, Griffith University, Monash University, The University of Queensland, RMIT and The University of Western Australia to share their good practice on a number of initiatives including the creation of a globally recognised mental health programme.

This year, Deakin University, Monash University, The University of Adelaide, University of Newcastle, Charles Stuart University and The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology successfully applied for a Global Impact Grant to share good practice case studies which support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Accredited Programme Leaders Network (APLN)

Australasian members are invited to be part of the Accredited Programme Leaders Network (APLN), a group chaired by Professor Abby Cathcart of QUT that meets regularly to discuss matters relating to Fellowship, accreditation and staff recognition.

The group features a range of invited speakers and has also led on projects specifically for the region. Key discussions at the Network this year have focused on mentoring of Fellowship and evaluation of Fellowship schemes. The Network also hosted guest speakers from other Advance HE accredited providers.

Collaborative networks - Australasian Strategic Advisory Board (ASAB)

We convene the Australasian Strategic Advisory Board (ASAB) three times a year to ensure Advance HE’s operations and services meet your needs. We use this insight to shape our work to your context. 

Meet Fiona

Fiona Whittenbury is our Head of Partnerships for Australasia. Fiona has over 25 years' of global experience in cross sector partnerships. Most recently Fiona held a management role at James Cook University where she led a diverse portfolio of partnership programs in the Graduate Research School.

Find out more about Fiona
Fiona Whittenbury