Governance and management accountability
The AIC did not come under external review in 2010–11.
|Appointed by the Governor General|
|Dr Adam Tomison , Director, Australian Institute of Criminology|
Board of Management
|Appointed by the Attorney-General|
|Professor Richard Fox AM (Chair), Faculty of Law, Monash University, Victoria||To 30/06/11|
|Mr John Lawler APM, Chief Executive, Australian Crime Commission||To 30/06/11|
|Mr Iain Anderson, First Assistant Secretary, Criminal Justice Division, Australian Government Attorney-General's Department|
|Appointed by the CRC|
|Ms Penny Armytage, Secretary, Department of Justice, Victoria||To 24/03/11|
|Ms Ingrid Haythorpe, Executive Director, Policy Planning & Legislation Division, Attorney-General's Department, South Australia||To 24/03/11|
|Mr Laurie Glanfield AM, Director-General, Department of Attorney General & Justice, New South Wales|
|Ms Cheryl Gwilliam, Director General, Department of the Attorney General, Western Australia|
|Mr Richard Coates, Director, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Department of Justice, Northern Territory||From 24/03/11|
|Mr Terry Ryan, Acting Deputy Director-General, Justice Services, Department of Justice & Attorney General, Queensland||From 24/03/11|
AIC Board Meetings in 2010–11
During 2010–11 AIC Board Meetings were held on the following dates:
- 21 July 2010 in Perth
- 11 Nov 2010 in Canberra
- 24 March 2011 in Sydney
The costs of the board members and meetings for the AIC were very little, as all members other than the Chairman are public sector employees and therefore did not require any payment from the AIC.
The Audit Committee was established in March 1999, in accordance with the provision of section 32 of the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997. The committee's primary role is to receive internal audit reports on the conduct of AIC business, undertake reviews in accordance with the approved audit work plan as approved by the Board of Management and monitor compliance with committee recommendations and with legislative and other obligations.
The Audit Committee comprised three members from the AIC's Board of Management and/or the Criminology Research Council's Board of Management:
- Mr Norman Reaburn (Chair)
- Ms Ingrid Haythorpe
- Ms Kathy Leigh.
There was also one independent member:
- Mr Kevin Patchell FCPA.
The AIC's internal audit provider for 2010–11 was PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Meetings were held on 15 July 2010, 31 August 2010, 24 March 2011 and 30 June 2011.
The committee considered one internal audit report on the AIC's new secretariat contract, 'National Drug Law Enforcement Fund (NDLERF) auspicing and secretariat compliance and efficiency review'.
The Audit Committee reviewed its charter and submitted it for approval by the Board of Management on 21 July 2010. It also conducted a review of its performance, in line with Australian National Audit Office better practice guidelines.
AIC Ethics Committee
The AIC Human Research Ethics Committee has been operating since 1992. It has eight members with backgrounds in law, social work and research, a minister of religion and/or Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander elder, as required by the National Health and Medical Research Council guidelines for ethics committees. The committee's role is to advise the Director whether approval to proceed should be granted for proposed research involving human subjects. It regularly reviews proposed projects to ensure that appropriate safeguards exist for conduct of the research to be consistent with ethical standards. During this reporting period, the committee reviewed and approved 13 proposals.
The Chair during the year was Professor Nicolas Peterson PhD, FASSA. Other members were:
- Ms Robyn Holder PhD candidate, MA
- Dr Tony Krone, PhD (from September 2010)
- Chaplain Gayl Mills (until August 2010)
- Ms Barbara Nicholson (from March 2011)
- Professor Debra Rickwood PhD, MAPS
- Mr Doug Taylor BA
- Ms Ruth Treyde BA/LLB
- Mr Steve Vaughn (until August 2010)
- Mr Anthony Morgan BA, GradDipCrim (AIC representative).
Corporate governance practices in the AIC are designed to ensure compliance with statutory and other external requirements to achieve best practice in administrative and financial management. In its final year of existence the Board of Management, with the Director, oversaw the establishment of effective, practical governance processes to meet the needs of the agency, through the senior management group.
In addition to core legislative instruments, the AIC operates through reference to the Director's Instructions, to which all policies and procedures are subsidiary. Frameworks are also in place for risk management and project management. These have been developed in accordance with ANAO better practice guides, in consultation with staff and internal audit and are available to staff on the intranet.
The role of Deputy Director (Corporate) and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is held by Mr Tony Marks, FCPA FFin, FTIA, who assists the Director in leading and managing the AIC and works with senior managers responsible for corporate support, grants, communication and information outcomes.
The position of Deputy Director (Research) was announced towards the end of 2010–11. Dr Rick Brown will fill this position in July 2011. He was previously a UK-based Criminology Consultant and Research Manager at the UK Home Office.
The Director was supported during 2010–11 by several committees that advised on the day-to-day operations of the AIC. The management committees were restructured during 2010 to provide a more appropriate representation and responsive management structure. As at 30 June 2011 the committees were:
The Senior Management Committee provides advice on research and management priorities and issues. Members of the committee are:
- Dr Adam Tomison, Director
- Tony Marks, Deputy Director (Corporate) and CFO
- Brian Russell, SFO
- Colin Campbell, Communications Manager
- Dr Russell Smith, Principal Criminology and Research Manager, Global, Economic and Electronic Crime
- Peter Homel, Research Manager, Crime Reduction and Review
- Laura Beacroft, Research Manager, Crime and Populations
- Jason Payne, Research Manager, Violent and Serious Crime
- Janine Chandler, Library Manager.
The Information and Communication Technology Committee provides advice to the Deputy Director (Corporate) on strategic direction and emerging issues. Members of the committee are:
- Tony Marks, Deputy Director (Corporate) and CFO
- Myles Lambert, ICT Administrator
- Jason Payne, Research Manager, Violent and Serious Crime
- Colin Campbell, Communications Manager
- Janine Chandler, Library Manager
The Staff Consultative Committee was established formally as part of the negotiation of the Agency Agreement 2009–11 as an acknowledgment that change in the workplace is constant and to identify, implement and encourage better practice, efficiency and productivity. Committee members are:
- Laura Beacroft, Research Manager, Crime and Populations (Director's representative)
- Tracey Cussen, Research Analyst (staff representative)
- Jacqui Joudo Larson, Senior Research Analyst (research member)
- Vacant (non-research member).
Financial Management and Accountability Act transition
The Criminology Research Act 1971, the AIC's enabling legislation, was amended by the Financial Framework Legislation Amendment Act 2010 with effect from 1 July 2011.
The legislative amendments merged the AIC and the Criminology Research Council (CRC), from two Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997 agencies into a single Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 agency. The merged entity will continue under the name 'Australian Institute of Criminology'.
The AIC was required to revise its outcome statement to align with the new governance arrangements. This statement was developed in consultation with the Department of Finance and Administration. The AIC obtained legal advice to validate that the revised outcome statement would support a valid appropriation.
The new outcome statement as published in the 2011–12 Portfolio Budgets Statement is:
Informed crime and justice policy and practice in Australia by undertaking, funding and disseminating policy-relevant research of national significance; and through the generation of a crime and justice evidence base and national knowledge centre.
In addition to these changes, section 23 of the Criminology Research Act 1971 was amended such that staff of the AIC are now employed under the Public Service Act 1999, except in certain circumstances where employment is provided under the Criminology Research Act.
The transition to the Financial Management Act governance arrangements was completed successfully by 1 July 2011, with a concerted effort on the part of the AIC corporate team, in consultation with the Attorney-General's Department and the Department of Finance. The AIC was not provided with any additional funding to undertake the transitional work, which included:
- development and legal confirmation of the new outcome statement
- the creation of the 'Criminology Research Special account'
- establishment in the central budget management system of the new single agency
- changes to banking arrangements
- changes to financial systems structure and reporting
- establishment of the new Criminology Research Advisory Council
- a review and update of the Chief Executive (Director's) Instructions
- a review of procurement policy and cost recovery guidelines
- a review and update of other AIC policies
- the transition to the Public Service Act
- web accessibility compliance
- FMA compliant Intellectual Property framework
- a review of existing contracts
- an assessment of a host of additional reporting obligations.
Arrangements were also made for a determination from the Public Service Commissioner to transfer staff to engagement under the Public Service Act.
The AIC's risk management framework provides the mechanism to prevent, or at least minimise, the impact of adverse events on the achievement of the AIC's outcome. The framework provides a systematic way to make informed decisions and ensure that risks have been recognised and managed.
The primary components of the AIC's risk management framework are:
- risk management policy and framework
- risk control register
- business continuity plan
- Director's Instructions—reflecting best practice in finance and administration
- finance policy and procedures
- research project management framework
- an annually reviewed audit program
The AIC also participates in the annual Comcover risk survey that benchmarks agencies' risk management frameworks, programs and systems against all participating agencies and peer group agencies. The AIC recorded above average ratings in the 2010–11 survey.
As required by the Commonwealth Fraud Control Guidelines, the Director certifies that he is confident that:
- fraud risk assessments and fraud control plans have been prepared that comply with the Commonwealth Fraud Control Guidelines
- appropriate fraud prevention, detection, investigation and reporting procedures and processes are in place
- annual fraud data that complies with the Commonwealth Fraud Control Guidelines has been collected and reported.
Workforce planning and administration
The executive management of the AIC continually reviews its workforce requirements. Staff are employed according to requirements arising from requests for research and support activities. The AIC also takes account of outsourcing opportunities in the university research and corporate sectors. Flexibility in staffing arrangements is essential to the AIC so that research outputs can be met through a collaborative approach and suitable appointments. This includes engaging leading national and international research organisations and individuals.
The AIC values fairness, equity and diversity. Consistent with that aim, there is a commitment to preventing and eliminating discrimination on the basis of race, colour, gender, sexual preference, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, family responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, national extraction or socioeconomic circumstances.
With the exception of the Director and one senior manager who remains covered by an Australian Workplace Agreement, all staff at the AIC are now covered by the Employee Collective Agreement 2009–11.
Agency Bargaining 2011–14
Agency bargaining is underway for an agreement to replace the current one which expires on 20 June 2011. On 30 June 2011 the staff bargaining team and the CPSU provided 'in-principle' agreement to the AIC's offer of 3 percent per annum, and other model clauses as set out in the Australian Public Service Commission's bargaining framework for FMA agencies (although the AIC was not at this time subject to those requirements).
Move to employment under the Public Service Act
As part of legislative amendments to the Criminology Research Act the AIC's staff became subject to the Public Service Act from 1 July 2011. In preparation for this change, as well as to provide effective career structures, the AIC again reviewed its work level standards and position classifications.
It was resolved that the current Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer classification be split into two classifications, those of Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer 1 and Senior Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer 2. This will provide a better career pathway for mid-level staff.
Work level standards have been developed for all proposed AIC roles that align with Australian Public Service position classifications, a requirement under the Public Service Act.
The current staffing summary is shown in Table 2. As of 1 July 2011, the classification structure will be as shown in Table 3.
|Classification and salary range||Male||Female||Total staff||ECA||AWA||Contract||Ongoing||Non-ongoing||Full-time||Part-time|
|Level A: Research officer/Admin officer $46,800–49,000||4||7||11||11||–||–||–||11||11||–|
|Level B: Research officer/ Admin officer $50,500–61,000||3||5||8||8||–||–||–||8||7||1|
|Level C: Research analyst/Senior admin officer $62,500–78,100||–||15||15||15||–||–||3||12||14||1|
|Level D: Senior research analyst/Admin specialist $80,200–96,300||3||7||10||10||–||–||7||3||7||3|
|Level E: Research Manager/Specialist/Admin executive $98,900–135,300||6||1||7||7||–||–||4||3||7||–|
|Senior executive officer >$135,000||1||–||1||–||1||–||1||1||–|
|Prior classification||Prior classification title||Salary with effect 1 July 2010||Current classification title||APS classification level||Comparative salary|
|Range from||Range to||Range from||Range to|
|AIC Level A||Research Officer/Admin Assistant||$44, 800||$49,500||Admin Assistant||APS 2||$44,800||$49,500|
|(With relevant qualification)||$46,800||$49,500||Research Officer I/Admin Officer I||APS 3||$49,600||$54,000|
|AIC Level B||Research Officer/Admin Officer||$50,500||$61,000||Research Officer II/Admin Officer II||APS 4||$55,000||$61,000|
|AIC Level C||Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer||$62,500||$78,100||Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer I||APS 5||$62,500||$69,000|
|Senior Research Analyst/Senior Admin Officer II||APS 6||$70,000||$80,000|
|AIC Level D||Senior Research Analyst/Admin Specialist||$80,200||$96,300||Principal Research Analyst/Admin Specialist||EL1||$82,500||$96,300|
|AIC Level E||Research Manager/Specialist/ Admin Executive||$98,900||$135,300||Research Manager/Admin Executive||EL2||$98,900||$125,000|
Current soft barrier
New soft barrier
Note: Where current salary for existing employees at the AIC Level E classification is above the revised 'range to', flexibility clauses will be used to ensure that there is no loss to current entitlements.
Performance Development Scheme
The AIC's performance and development scheme helps managers and employees make strategic links between business goals and key result areas when identifying opportunities for development. The scheme ensures greater transparency and consistency in performance reviews and rewards for all staff. The scheme emphasises continuous assessment and improvement with a strong focus on improvements in productivity. The scheme promotes fairness through clearly defining expectations aligned with corporate goals. It includes:
- transparent appraisal outcomes for all staff
- individual training and development plans
- use of review processes at six-monthly cycles
- use of structured underperformance provisions and strategies.
Learning and development
The AIC has a highly educated workforce with specialist and generalist skills. Of the 51 staff employed at 30 June 2011, 36 percent had undergraduate qualifications (22% of those with honours), 32 percent had postgraduate qualifications and a further 22 percent had doctorates. A further 12 percent of staff have specialist qualifications, such as Microsoft certified systems engineer (2%), or additional professional qualifications, such as CPA or solicitor practising certificates (10%) Eighteen percent of staff are currently undertaking study towards a higher-level award, with the ongoing support of the AIC. The AIC recognises that staff involvement in these activities will contribute to the achievement of its goals.
The AIC is also committed to specialist training for employees. All employees have the chance to take part in relevant activities that have a clear connection with AIC work and will assist with ongoing career development. This support may include on and off the job training, work placements, staff presentations at national and international conferences, formal study and reimbursement or payment for these activities. The AIC also takes advantage of training days and briefing sessions offered by other government departments and agencies such as Comcover, National Archives Australia and the Australian Government Solicitor.
In addition, staff are trained internally by senior staff on a range of applications, processes and methodologies and statistics courses. The AIC's communications staff continued to develop the media capabilities of research staff by conducting in-house training sessions during the year and will conduct further seminars involving practical examples and mock media interviews to improve skills for communicating the AIC's research. The AIC also arranged the mentoring of some staff by leading academics or key business personnel.
The AIC is refining and developing its induction program to emphasise the importance of supporting and displaying the AIC's values. The induction training program provides new staff with an understanding of governance, research methodologies and publication processes.
Australia Day Achievement Award Medallions 2011
From left: Michael Ofei, Dr Adam Tomison and Anthony Morgan
Anthony has demonstrated leadership, perseverance, good comradeship and innovation in his work at the AIC. His project management, research analyses and publications have been of a consistently high standard. Anthony also made an important contribution to the ongoing enhancement of the AIC's professional capacity through setting up model processes for submitting research and evaluation tenders, as well as helping others to develop skills in the process. Similarly, he played a crucial role in the development and delivery of the Evaluation Workshops for Research staff, helping to set up a model for similar training workshops in the coming years.
Michael joined the AIC in November 2009 as a Trainee Accountant from the private sector. In a relatively short time, Michael developed new and efficient accounts/receivable processes that not only provided better efficiency for the AIC, but also significant costs savings. Michael combined study and work at the AIC with great competency and professionalism, working to complete a Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Canberra.
Non-salary benefits provided to staff in 2010–11 reinforced the AIC's position as an employer of choice and included:
- flexible working arrangements, which exclude the notion of core hours
- influenza immunisation for staff
- employee assistance services including counselling
- OH&S training
- the opportunity for staff to present their work at external conferences and events
- an in-house program of training in research methods, statistics and criminological theory.
2011 Internship Program—January 2011
Applications were invited for the annual four-week research internships from undergraduate and postgraduate students entering their final year in 2011, or students who had completed their studies in 2010. Students in criminology or criminal justice in an Australian university were eligible as were students in law or social science whose subjects included criminological themes. One of the internships was designated as an Indigenous placement but operated in the same way as all other internships. The internships were highly competitive, attracting over 70 applications, from which the AIC granted five internships for 2011.
The AIC blog provides an online information-sharing facility, making better use of the AIC's intranet facilities and providing a faster, easier and more efficient method of internal communication than the previous bimonthly staff newsletter. It allows news posts from the Director or any of the work areas to be made at any time to all staff.
The intranet is the AIC's main knowledge sharing and development vehicle. It links to information in the public domain in the library catalogue and the external databases to which the library subscribes. It encourages researchers to build on previous AIC research by providing access to research projects, datasets and presentations.
The AIC acquires or creates datasets for many of its research projects. These are all captured and made available to AIC staff through the intranet, using the library database as an interface. The data collected can be used to deliver other client data services where appropriate and will be used for further analysis in future research projects. Four new datasets were added to the database during the year, making a total of 135 datasets.
The AIC has continued its outsourcing of payroll function to minimise corporate overhead.
Strategic finance activity
The AIC has adopted the provision of shared services where appropriate, through several means:
- providing services to other agencies
- outsourcing selected support services, such as payroll and ICT backup support
- use of multi-agency, or whole-of government procurement contracts.
After a successful tender bid, the AIC commenced providing secretariat and auspicing services for the Department of Health and Ageing and the National Drug Law Enforcement Research Fund (NDLERF) Board from 1 July 2010 for a four-year period.
This service meets the strategic research affiliation needs of the AIC, as well as reducing the unit cost of grants administration.
Auspicing services will include providing a secretariat for NDLERF and managing the NDLERF website and publications process through funding of $1.91 million in 2010–11 and $0.84 million in another three years.
The AIC has also negotiated to take on secretariat services for the Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology from 2011–12, which includes management of its website and annual conference.
The AIC continued to manage and update the Indigenous Justice Clearinghouse website in partnership with the NSW Department of Attorney General and Justice.
The AIC has reduced travel expenditure by around 30 percent as a result of adoption of the Department of Finance centralised travel arrangements. In addition, office services, office machines, ICT procurement, legal services and electricity contracts of other agencies are used to achieve better value for money and minimise administrative overhead in managing procurement. As contracts for services expire, it is standard AIC practice to test the availability and pricing of similar services through contracts or panel arrangements in place in the Attorney-General's Department and the Department of Finance.
The overall result for 2010–11 was an operating surplus of $133,149 (2009–10: $6,439) against a budgeted surplus of $200,000 in the 2011–12 Portfolio Budget Statements.
The total operating revenue was $9,024,256 (2009–10: $9,167,214) and consisted of the following:
- government appropriations of $6,770,000
- sale of goods and rendering of services of $1,959,678
- interest of $237,748
- other revenue of $56,830.
Revenue from government appropriations decreased by a net amount of $484,000 from 2009–10, reflecting the impact of a whole-of-government departmental efficiency measure of $500,000 in addition to the ongoing 1.25 percent efficiency dividend, offset partially by increases resulting from changes in prices and wages indices. The AIC's budget for 2011–12 has been reduced by a further $1,000,000 as a result of the above measure, in addition to a reduction of $862,000 as a result of the termination of the Anti-Money Laundering/Counter-Terrorism Financing measure.
Own-source revenues have increased by $341,187 from 2009–10 reflecting an increase in secretariat services provided by the AIC, along with additional research services provided on a contracted fee-for-service basis for agencies across the sector.
The total operating expense was $8,891,107 (2009–10: $9,160,775) and consisted of the following:
- employee costs of $5,137,690
- supplier expenses of $3,416,045
- grants expenses of $224,689
- depreciation and amortisation of $112,683.
Expenditure was generally less than in 2009–10 resulting from the reduced funding position of the AIC as a result of the whole-of-government departmental efficiency measure. However, additional own-source revenues for secretariat functions have seen a related increase in grant expenditure up $181,689 on 2009–10.
The AIC actively sought to reduce staff numbers in the second half of 2010–11 to ensure they were appropriate to the reduced funding position in 2011–12. This included one staff redundancy, termination of some fixed-term contracts and not replacing some vacated positions.
Net asset position
The net asset position at 30 June 2011 was $1,900,147 (2009–10: $1,766,998).
Total assets at 30 June 2011 were $6,287,365 (2009–10: $3,923,200). The increase in assets resulted primarily from an increase in cash holdings under the AIC's secretariat contracts. The majority of these cash holdings are committed in the forward years.
Total liabilities at 30 June 2011 were $4,387,218 (2009–10: $2,156,202). The difference is mainly due to an increase in the level of unearned revenue through the AIC's secretariat contracts.
Consultants are generally engaged when particular specialist expertise is necessary, sufficiently skilled expertise is not immediately available in-house, or independent advice on an issue is required.
The services provided by new and continuing consultants in the reporting period included internal and external audit services, legal advice on the AIC's change in governance arrangements, contractual and human resource matters.
During 2010–11, only two new consultancy contracts (one being less than $10,000) were entered into, involving total actual expenditure of $44,500. In addition, three ongoing consultancies were active during the year, involving a total actual expenditure of $109,793. Expenditure for the year totalled $154,293 (2009–10: $240,578).
|Consultant Name||Description||Contract price||Selection process||Justificationa|
|HBA Consulting||Work level standards review||$5,750||Direct source||A|
|ANAO||External audit||$38,750||Self appointed in accordance with the audit act||A|
a: justification for decision to use consultancy—A: Need for independent research or assessment; B: Need for specialised or professional skills; C: Skills currently unavailable within agency.
The AIC incurs legal expenditure when particular specialist expertise is necessary or independent advice on an issue is required. Total expenditure on legal services for 2010–11 was $118,469.45 (inclusive of GST). Some of this expenditure is included in the consultancy services reported above.
The services provided included legal advice and writing on the AIC's change in governance arrangements, contractual and human resource matters.
The AIC has developed internal policies and procedures for purchasing goods and services. These are included in the Director's Instructions and are in accordance with the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines and ministerial approvals required under the AIC enabling legislation.
PricewaterhouseCoopers conducted a review of the AIC's ICT Strategic Plan. This review was to update the strategic plan and to assess the current ICT environment and opportunities to develop and improve this. The review highlighted the following three strategic phases to be conducted over the next three years:
- improving IT performance and reliability
- improving management of information
- improving dissemination across channels.
The review was endorsed in November 2010 and the AIC began implementing the plan immediately.
Network and infrastructure
The AIC's ICT network was independently assessed so it could meet Defence Signal's Directorate requirements to be cleared for a classification of 'protected'. A full report was received and the network was approved at the 'protected' level. This new certification will allow more secure and convenient communication with other government departments including a request from the Attorney-General's Department to allow for email transmission of cabinet-in-confidence correspondence.
The 'in-sourcing' of Fedlink (the federal government's secure network) was initially delayed due to configuration changes which were required by Verison (the Fedlink authorised service provider) but after initial testing identifying some minor issues this was completed in November, delivering the anticipated cost savings for 2010–11.
The AIC's video conferencing capabilities have also been enhanced. Full video conferencing is now available for newer ISP (internet) and older ISDN (phone) connections. There are now high-resolution cameras in several conference rooms and for off-site staff.
Crimestoppers Australia relocated all of its sites to AIC servers. The AIC will also host other sites expected to be developed by Crimestoppers in 2011–12. The NDLERF website was transferred to the AIC for hosting as part of its secretariat and auspicing services.
Work commenced to improve the function of the AIC's web search engines with the testing and purchase of a Google site search. The function was updated on the AIC's main website and ancillary websites.
In the AIC transition to FMA requirements, the websites were tested and upgraded to improve accessibility. From 1 July 2011 publications were released in accordance with the FMA national transition strategy guidelines for web content accessibility version 2.0.