Sport and exercise science experts from Swansea and the University of Canberra (UC) in Australia have launched an official partnership which will see them collaborate on research, teaching and student exchanges.
The partnership was launched at an online event attended by the Vice Chancellors of both universities and around 50 academic colleagues from Swansea and UC.
Both universities are centres of excellence in sports science.
UC has research expertise in areas such as high-performance sport, sports integrity, sport and exercise medicine and environmental physiology.
UC experts work closely with top-level Australian sports professionals, organisations and peak bodies, including Brumbies Rugby, UC Capitals (women’s basketball), Canberra United Football Club (women’s football), Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), Diving Australia, Triathlon Australia, Swimming Australia and Cricket Australia.
Swansea University’s Sport and Exercise Sciences department is in the UK top 20 and is 5th in the UK for research impact. Research areas include elite and professional sport, exercise, health and medicine, and sports ethics, integrity and governance.
The Swansea team works alongside Sport Wales, Welsh Rugby Union, Ospreys, RFU, British Cycling, English Institute of Sport, Public Health Wales and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
Researchers from the two departments have already been working together on topics such as rugby science. The partnership will build on that foundation to develop a range of new collaborations that support each university’s strategic research and teaching objectives.
Planned future activity includes a research seminar series, seedcorn funding to develop research projects, reciprocal student exchange and joint teaching activities.
Professor Paul Boyle, Vice Chancellor of Swansea University, said:
“At Swansea University, we understand the importance of developing robust, dynamic and mutually beneficial international partnerships across the world. The University of Canberra’s global outlook and international reach align naturally with our own values, and we are therefore very pleased to be exploring exciting opportunities for collaboration across our institutions.
Given the centrality of sport to our Universities’ strategic ambitions, it is entirely fitting that our first formal collaboration is within the field of Sports and Exercise Science. I am delighted that we are embarking on this shared journey.”
Professor Paddy Nixon, Vice Chancellor of the University of Canberra, said:
“Swansea and UC have shared values and aspirations, with educational and research excellence at the heart of what we do. This partnership will enable new and greater collaboration between us, with a focus on research, exchange and developing joint accreditations.
The University of Canberra will soon release a whole-of-institution sport strategy, and international partnerships such as the one with Swansea will see UC positioned as a global leader in sport.”
Dr Caroline Coleman-Davies, deputy head of academic partnerships at Swansea University, said:
“Our existing international partnerships - from Texas to Grenoble – show clearly how they benefit students and researchers alike. I am confident that the same will be true of this exciting new collaboration between two leading centres of excellence in sports science.”
Professor Liam Kilduff, head of the A-STEM research team in sports and exercise science at Swansea, said:
“A collaboration of this nature is pivotal to our overall strategic plan as a department. Canberra is a great fit with significant overlap between the two groups which will allow us to further develop our profile. But this partnership will also give us the capacity to expand into new and exciting areas of teaching and research that will benefit staff and students alike.”