University summer school students clap and cheer in a classroom

About the ACU

The ACU is an international organisation dedicated to building a better world through higher education.

We believe that international collaboration is central to this ambition. By bringing universities together from around the world – and crucially the people who study and work within them ‒ we help to advance knowledge, promote understanding, broaden minds, and improve lives.

We champion higher education as a cornerstone of stronger societies, supporting our members, partners, and stakeholders as they adapt to a changing world.

The road to 2030

Universities make a critical contribution to sustainable development across the Commonwealth and beyond.

Our strategic plan - 'The road to 2030' - reinforces our fundamental belief that global challenges can only be solved through international collaboration, and our collective commitment to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through higher education.

Our mission

To build a better world through higher education.

Our vision

A world in which higher education transcends borders, strengthens societies, fosters innovation, and lifts the lives of people throughout the Commonwealth and beyond.

Our strategic priorities

  • To champion the power of higher education to improve lives
  • To support the long-term vitality of universities
  • To engage and connect universities across borders, and promote collaboration among them
  • To deliver educational opportunities that make a positive and lasting difference
  • To uphold the ACU's reputation for excellence and demonstrate its impact

Our values


We strive to excel in all we do, and continuously reflect on our work to find new ways forward.


We believe that cooperation and sharing ideas makes us stronger.


We encourage people to think differently, be curious, and explore new ideas.


We treat others in the way we would like to be treated – with fairness, integrity, and generosity.


We value difference, and encourage and celebrate the diverse voices of our colleagues and partners.