The road to 2030: building a better world through higher education

The road to 2030: building a better world through higher education

Published on 15 March 2019

The ACU believes that universities make a critical contribution to sustainable development across the Commonwealth and beyond. Today, we are launching our new strategy, 'The road to 2030', which explains how the ACU will work with its members and partners to build a better world through higher education.

'The road to 2030' is our new strategic plan that outlines a revitalised mission and vision for the ACU, underpinned by five strategic priorities that will guide our work:

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

In an introductory message, HRH The Duchess of Sussex, Patron of the ACU, said: 'In many territories throughout the world, a university education is the key to ending poverty by empowering students to generate incomes for their families and wider communities, as well as securing their own futures.

'I am inspired by students of today, by their vision and ambition for positive change, and by their understanding of the powerful role higher education can play to create a brighter future. The Commonwealth's young people are an incredible asset, and it is vital that we invest in them'.

Joanna Newman, ACU Chief Executive and Secretary General, said: 'I'm very pleased to launch this new strategy for the ACU. 'The road to 2030' reinforces our fundamental belief that global challenges can only be solved through international collaboration, and our collective commitment to higher education's contribution to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

'With our new strategic priorities in place, we will continue to act as a catalyst for change, using our convening power to connect universities across borders and champion the power of higher education to improve lives'.

More information

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.

HRH The Duchess of Sussex became Patron of the ACU in January 2019 – this patronage was passed on to her by HM The Queen, who had previously been Patron for 33 years.

For further information, please email