Flinders University

Inspire. Innovate. Make a difference.


For over 50 years, Flinders has been a centre of inspiring achievement: from our pioneering research and excellence in teaching to the positive impact we have in the communities we serve.  

Inspiration leads to innovation. But innovation is more than just a buzzword at Flinders.

It extends from our founding Vice-Chancellor Peter Karmel’s entreaty to ‘experiment and experiment bravely’ through to the creative, trailblazing work of our staff, students and alumni.

As we enter an era of disruptive change and remarkable technological innovation, Flinders is well prepared for this unpredictable, exciting future.

Our strong network of external links keeps our work dynamic, enabling us to connect across barriers to create enterprising solutions for the future, to make a difference by changing lives and, ultimately, the world.

People and culture

People are the heart of our University and it is the sum of their achievements that will deliver our vision and future success. Our culture must support and encourage those achievements and must value the positive contributions made by staff, students, alumni and council. Above all, we must always seek to inspire and enable the achievements of others.

Flinders University’s heritage of quality, independence and excellence will continue to be a source of strength and competitive advantage. Making a Difference builds on these strong foundations and aims to secure our place as a world-leading university.

Our paramount focus on student success will be a distinguishing feature of the Flinders Experience and will be the measure by which we judge the impact of innovations in teaching and student support.

New specialist academic roles will enhance our capacity to deliver exceptional educational programs and provide a career path for the finest educators. These new roles will enable us to increase our investment in outstanding research, building critical mass, and developing research leaders of the future.

Professional staff will contribute to our vision by delivering agile systems, processes and functions that facilitate and enhance our academic mission.

We will champion diversity and equality of opportunity, respecting peoples from all nations, cultures and backgrounds.

We will welcome our engagement with external stakeholders, and cultivate effective partnerships in ways that reflect our obligation of service to our community and to society more broadly.

Our future success will rely on dynamic staff, ready to embrace the challenges and opportunities presented in a rapidly changing environment. It requires a culture of trust and empowerment, built on the bedrock of common values and a shared sense of purpose.

Together we will meet the challenges of a globally competitive environment by maintaining an uncompromising commitment to excellence in everything that we do.


The achievements of our researchers will determine our international standing among the world’s universities and deliver outcomes that make our world a better place.

Research and creative endeavour have been core to Flinders University’s identity since inception.

We will increase our research intensity through targeted investment in areas with potential for significant impact.

Flinders will proactively engage with business, industry, government and non-government organisations to deliver outcomes that promote economic development and change lives for the better.

We will maximise our ability to translate research into innovations for industry and society by commercialising our intellectual property, driving improvements in public policy, and improving professional and personal practices.

The impact of our research will further build our global reputation and create opportunities for strategic international collaborations with high quality partners in academia and industry.

Our research-based students will be equipped at the highest level in their discipline. They will be provided with opportunities to gain experience in business, industry, government and community sectors. Developing personal enterprise and transferable skills will unlock career opportunities well beyond their specific areas of expertise.

Flinders’ research will be carried out at the highest levels of ethical standards.

Engagement and impact

Our active engagement with business, industry, government and the community is central to our mission to improve lives and to address the needs of society. Effective communication and productive partnerships will expand our capacity to address the significant economic, scientific and social challenges of our age.

Making a Difference requires that our actions have impact whether at local, national or international levels. Maximising that impact requires effective engagement. This means that we listen and we deliver, tackling real-world problems and delivering effective solutions.

Our courses will be informed by the needs of business, industry, healthcare and other public sectors to deliver graduates who meet the requirements of tomorrow’s workforce.

Our campus environment will be a catalyst for collaboration and engagement. We will invest in infrastructure that enhances our community and creates a precinct for innovation, enterprise and economic growth.

Our fundamental research will deliver outcomes that change the way in which we understand the world around us. Our knowledge and expertise will also be applied in areas that deliver practical and economic benefits for social good.

Our focus on personal enterprise and work-integrated learning will enhance graduate employability and serve as a vehicle for forming sustainable partnerships with business, industry and other sectors.

Our commitment to education, health and wellbeing in the Northern Territory, and other regional, rural and remote communities, will continue to embody our mission of Making a Difference.

We will engage with Indigenous Australians, students, staff and the community to respect Indigenous knowledge systems and perspectives, and to progress Indigenous advancement in education, research, employment and wellbeing.

The achievements of our staff, students and alumni will be celebrated and communicated to the wider community.

Flinders University has a large and growing body of alumni across Australia and beyond; we will create and enable opportunities for our community to contribute to our ongoing success.

By providing thought leadership on matters of local, national and international significance, Flinders will grow in profile and reputation, with an increased ability to speak to the world and make a positive difference.


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Key staff:

Mr Stephen Gerlach

Mr Stephen Gerlach AM became Chancellor of Flinders University in March 2010.  He is a Company Director and Corporate Advisor.


Professor Colin Stirling

Professor Colin J Stirling brings extensive experience in research, teaching and management to Flinders University as President and Vice-Chancellor.

Key facts:

  • Established in 1966 on the lands of the Kaurna nation.
  • Our namesake is British navigator and cartographer Matthew Flinders.
  • Main campus located at Bedford Park, with additional Adelaide locations at Victoria Square and Tonsley.
  • Regional locations span the Barossa, Port Lincoln, Mt Gambier, Renmark, and Victor Harbor.
  • Interstate locations include Hamilton and Warrnambool (Victoria), and Alice Springs, Casuarina, Darwin, Katherine and Nhulunbuy (Northern Territory).
  • Courses delivered in Hong Kong, Singapore, China, and Malaysia.
  • Member of the International Network of Universities and Innovative Research Universities Australia.