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Opposition call for university inquiry defeated

Brett Mason, Australia’s shadow universities minister, has called on the senate to launch an independent inquiry into university funding.

Mason made the proposal that the Education, Employment and Workplace Relations References Committee should investigate the matter during a parliamentary session on 18 August.

The suggestion was defeated by 35 votes to 31.

Mason had called on the committee to investigate issues including the effectiveness of the system for base funding for universities and research grants. He was also concerned about how successfully institutions could handle increased demand for higher education with their current resources and the “quality and diversity” of both teaching and research.

The government is conducting its own review of base funding for universities, due to be published in October.