Report

2013 age profile of the academic staff in universities, polytechnics and wānanga

24 Feb 2014
Description

The ageing of New Zealand’s academic workforce requires careful management, however, universities now have a larger pool of ‘other’ academic staff from which rejuvenation of the senior academic workforce could occur.

Key findings

In 2013, the age structure of the academic staff at universities and polytechnics was substantially older than at wānanga:

  • 47 percent of the university academic staff employed in 2013 was aged 50 years and over (compared to 49 percent in 2012)
  • 50 percent of the polytechnic academic staff employed in 2013 was aged 50 years and over (compared to 49 percent in 2012)
  • 38 percent of the wānanga academic staff employed in 2013 was aged 50 years and over (compared to 38 percent in 2012)

In response to the greater focus on research performance, universities now have a smaller pool of lecturers from which rejuvenation of the senior academic workforce can occur, potentially encouraging institutions to do more recruitment overseas. However, universities now have a larger pool of ‘other’ academic staff from which rejuvenation of the senior academic workforce could occur – this group covers other teaching or combined teaching/ research staff such as assistant lecturers, visiting academics, teaching fellows, etc.

Polytechnics now employ a higher proportion of principal lecturers due to the ‘drag effect’ of an ageing workforce, but the structure of their academic staff by designation has not changed significantly overall so that rejuvenation of the senior academic workforce can occur from a large pool of tutors.

Wānanga have a younger age structure than universities and polytechnics and they have a large pool of tutors from which rejuvenation of the senior academic workforce can occur.

Publication Details
Published year only: 
2014
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