ACIAR was established in 1982, under the ACIAR Act, which included provision for a sunset review of the Centre after ten years of operation. This review recommended that the sunset clause be lifted, to be replaced by periodic reviews of the Centre.
As a result, ACIAR’s effectiveness has been assessed formally through reviews at regular intervals throughout its years of operation. The reviews that have been conducted are as follows:
The Minister for Foreign Affairs commissioned a Panel to conduct a Review of ACIAR.
The Review was asked to address issues including: the appropriateness of ACIAR’s goals and strategies in helping people overcome poverty; ACIAR’s effectiveness in improving livelihoods through more productive and sustainable agriculture, and achieving knowledge generation and capacity building outcomes; and the efficiency of ACIAR’s operations and arrangements for managing research programs and building capacity, including internal capability and systems, risk management, performance oversight, and transparency.
Training activities in ACIAR are integral to attainment of institutional objectives and have contributed significantly to the impact and sustainability of ACIAR’s programs. The Review takes this success as its context to focus on areas which can be improved to further enhance current outputs and position ACIAR for future approaches.
11 recommendations are made.
The Panel was impressed with the high standing that ACIAR has already achieved in the field of international agricultural research. With very few exceptions, this positive reaction was reflected in the views of all who have been associated with ACIAR, whether as participants in collaborative projects or as members of sister institutions.
A great deal of what ACIAR does is therefore judged to be excellent, a view that is shared by the Panel. While noting ACIAR's strengths and achievements, however, the Panel has necessarily focused mainly on those areas of ACIAR's activities where improvements could be effected.
A proposal to establish an international research assistance foundation in Australia.
In June, 1975, a small group from academic business and government circles met in Canberra to consider an important question: Would Australia’s aid to developing countries in science and technology be more effective if it were managed through an independent body? The group concluded the idea had considerable merit, and endorsed a plan for a more comprehensive study of the question.