HR In HE Conference

Universities in a Changing World: Challenges and Opportunities for HR

Call for proposals 

Do you want to contribute to the programme of the 9th ACU HR in HE Community Conference and represent your university on an international stage?

You are invited to submit a proposal for a presentation, panel discussion or poster session, focusing on the conference theme, ‘Universities in a changing world: Challenges and opportunities for HR’, within one of the following sub themes:

  • HR in the digital age

Exploring the impact of digital technologies, including artificial intelligence, on the future of universities and work/ skills; the role of HR in the digital age; delivering maximum value through digital technologies by creating efficiency and innovation in HR tools and approaches, including the use of social media; and the use of HR analytics to drive universities’ outcomes and technology that connects the workforce.

  • Diversity, inclusion and belonging

How universities are embracing diversity and becoming more inclusive places to work and learn; and creating truly inclusive environments where employees and students can really be authentic and flourish.

  • Mental health and well being

The importance of improving employee well being in order to achieve organisational success; strategies for developing a culture where mental health is supported in the workplace, including for staff and students; and the importance of work-life balance and how to achieve it.

  • Attracting and retaining talent

The pivotal role of people and talent to enable universities to succeed in a global world; and innovative strategies to recruiting, developing, and retaining a talented workforce.

  • Shifting priorities in HR

Developing imperatives for higher education across the Commonwealth, with the increasing prominence of funding, sustainability, diversifying the academy, and decolonising the university curriculum; how HR can assist and play its role in helping the higher education sector to meet the challenges of changing times; and the new approaches needed for HR to meet and support the challenges facing the higher education sector.

  • HR professionals as higher education strategists

Strategically positioning HR to create real value for universities; and a changing role for HR practitioners with an increasing emphasis on business, change and stakeholder management, to drive outcomes and make a difference.

These themes provide a broad range of opportunities for HR professionals and academics in the sector to explore existing and emerging challenges and opportunities for HR in higher education. We invite you to profile your programmes and initiatives, including the lessons learnt, share your knowledge and experience, and network with delegates working in HR from across the globe.


Types of presentations:

  1. Individual Presentation: Individual presentations will normally be for a maximum of 45 minutes and followed by a discussion of up to 15 minutes, including questions from the floor.
  2. Panel discussion: A panel discussion includes up to 4 institutions or presenters who would like to discuss different aspects of a similar theme. Panel discussions will normally be for a maximum of 45 minutes where speakers share the allotted time and then provide up to 15 minutes for questions from the floor.
  3. Poster presentation: A poster session is the presentation of research or professional information. The hard facts of the presentation are displayed on a poster of A1 size. Posters will be displayed in a prominent spot at the conference venue. You would then be invited to answer questions from delegates at a set point during the conference. You will be required to arrange the printing and transportation of your poster to the venue.


Application process:

Complete an online form providing the following:

  1. The title of your presentation
  2. The sub-theme
  3. Presentation format (individual presentation, panel discussion, poster presentation)
  4. One paragraph summary of your presentation (maximum of 150 words)
  5. Author(s) and full contact information (including email addresses, telephone number, etc)
  6. Speaker’s biography (maximum of 150 words). No CVs will be accepted.
  7. Speaker’s clear, professional photo (high resolution image in Jpeg format, minimum 300 dpi)
  8. Description of your presentation (no more than 2-pages), including: a) description of the major discussion points in your presentation, b) how you will engage the audience, and c) takeaways for delegates.


Deadline for submissions: Monday 27 April, 23.30 (BST)

All proposals will be peer reviewed by a carefully selected committee of senior HR practitioners. Successful candidates will be advised by the beginning of May.

We are eager to assemble a conference that benefits from a demographically diverse programme. If you are a member of an underrepresented group and wish to identify yourself as such, please note this on your submission.

All accepted presenters are expected to register for the conference and are responsible for their own travel, accommodation, visas and conference fees.