The University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), is a public Australian university in the Central Business District of Sydney. UTS traces its roots to technical schools in Sydney in the 1870s and was established in its modern form in 1988 out of the older New South Wales Institute of Technology. Today, UTS enrolls about 30,000 students across 7 faculties. University of Technology, Sydney’s website>>
Shopfront is a gateway for community access to the University of Technology, Sydney. Shopfront links community organizations to UTS’s knowledge, skills, resources and professional expertise to do community-initiated projects and community-engaged research with real social benefit. Since 1996 more than 500 projects have been successfully completed with over 400 community partners, all UTS faculties, and more than 2,000 UTS staff and students. Most community projects are carried out by students through their subjects under the supervision of academics. The process is collaborative: students and community groups are involved in all facets of the project’s development and implementation. Projects are initiated by the community and can range from large, multi-disciplinary undertakings to small projects that involve one or two students. These projects are facilitated by the Community Research Elective, a cross-university, project-based subject that enables undergraduate and postgraduate students to work on a community project as part of their UTS coursework.
For example, UTS Shopfront partners with the Women’s and Girls’ Emergency Centre (WAGEC), an organization that provides support services for women who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Students from the Faculty of Business are helping WAGEC to develop a five-year fundraising and marketing strategy that will support the objectives outlined in the organization’s strategic plan. Learn more>>
UTS Shopfront has developed a range of research-based activities that flow from its core community project work and that address the needs, concerns or questions raised by community partners. Research activities offer opportunities for full community participation within a framework of social justice and equity. Shopfront’s research agenda also supports emerging UTS researchers with a commitment the field of ‘university-community engagement.’ In its aim to support the scholarship of engaged-research Shopfront publishes an Academic Research series, a Student Research Series, and the ejournal Gateways: International Journal of Community Research and Engagement. Finally, the UTS Shopfront Research Fellowship is a competitive award that provides teaching release for UTS researchers to develop community-engaged research. Learn more>>
Research into sustainability has been strong at UTS for more than ten years, with specific expertise in economic, environmental and social sustainability. The Institute for Sustainable Futures was established as a flagship research institute of the University of Technology, Sydney in 1996. Administratively, the Environmental Sustainability Initiative (ESI) is being rolled out across all campuses and encourages sustainable practice in the day-to-day activities of UTS staff and students. Learn more>>