Vice-Chancellor’s message

Our vision is for Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington to be a world-leading capital city university and one of the great global-civic universities

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington was founded in 1897. Prominent among the motives for its establishment was the pressing need for the nation’s capital and its region to be supported by a public university. Today, we view this mandate of civic engagement in a global context and are determined to ensure that our local communities benefit from the University’s internationally respected academic excellence.

One of the distinctive features of Wellington’s university is our ability to draw upon the national thinking and global mindedness of our capital city community. As a result, we are in an ideal position to revitalise the civic university tradition with a national and international outlook; to redefine the ‘local-civic university’ as the ‘global-civic university’. In so doing, we highlight our commitment to civil society and global citizenship, declare our determination to contribute to the resolution of international challenges and affirm our intent to prepare critically informed, globally confident, civic-minded graduates.

This international perspective reinforces rather than diminishes our University's commitment to our locality—Wellington, New Zealand and the wider Asia–Pacific region1. This is the area of the world that sustains us, our staff and students, and that increasingly defines our institutional identity and future. We will employ our international academic leadership for the benefit of this region, helping to bind the global to the local and the local to the global.

This Strategic Plan outlines a 20-year path for Wellington’s university that is unreservedly ambitious, in keeping with the confidence and aspirations of our Council, staff, students, alumni and communities.

The plan commits our University to uphold a set of institutional values and enunciates a mission and purpose. Six primary strategies span our Strategic Plan: academic emphasis, the quality of our research, teaching, learning and student experience, our focus on inclusivity, our engagement with our communities and the depth of our intellectual influence in the Wellington region and beyond. A cluster of five enabling strategies covers priorities such as the employment of world-class scholars, the increased scale of our University, the effectiveness of our processes, the sustainability of our revenue and the communication of the quality of our research and teaching.

The development of this Strategic Plan has required us to pause to consider our shared future. We now envision Wellington’s university as a world-leading capital city university; one of the great global-civic universities. It is time to set confidently about making this happen.

Professor Grant Guilford

1 Defined for these purposes as Australasia, Asia, Oceania and the Pacific Rim, including the Americas, Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.