Strategic partnerships

A ‘strategic partner’ is an institution with which the University will develop stronger and more productive collaboration as envisaged in the University’s Strategic Plan

The University’s Strategic Plan makes a clear commitment to international engagement. One of the University's initiatives is to identify strategic partners out of hundreds of individual linkages.

A ‘strategic partner’ is an institution with which the University will develop stronger and more productive collaboration. These stronger partnerships will lead to opportunities for external funding, resources and further collaboration beyond these institutions. In addition to research collaboration, the university will engage with a strategic partner in student and staff mobility, student articulation, joint partnerships and conferences, and areas of international engagement. Activities will differ at each partner institution depending on the relationship.

We formalised our first strategic partnership with Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) in 2019. In 2020, we formalised our second strategic partnership with the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Pennsylvania State University strategic partnership

Penn State and University of Auckland participants in the November 2019 Research Collaboration Development Workshop

In 2018, the University selected Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) as a strategic partner institution following an extended analysis of our international engagement. The University of Auckland is already supporting our strategic partnership through our International Central Networks and Partnerships Grant (ICNPG) - see International Opportunities. In addition, Penn State is one of the select international universities eligible for participation in the University of Auckland's Northern Hemisphere Summer Research Scholarship.

As part of our partnership-related activities, the University of Auckland hosted a two-day workshop for Penn State academics on November 18-19, 2019. This workshop provided an opportunity to develop cross-university collaborative ideas for joint research proposals.

Collaboration Development Seed Fund

Penn State and the University of Auckland have established a Collaboration Development Fund supporting a limited number of small collaboration grants. Jointly funded by the administrations and faculties of both universities, they will be used to help establish long-term collaborative research and education projects between the institutions. In June of 2020, the following projects were awarded Collaboration Development Seed Fund Grants:

  • New Materials and Electronics for Wearable Energy Harvesting - University of Auckland Project Lead: Professor Iain Anderson, Auckland Bioengineering Institute
  • A Platform for Advancing Computational Neuromuscular Modelling of Human and Animal Movement – University of Auckland Project Lead: Professor Thor Besier, Auckland Bioengineering Institute
  • Re-Engineering Anaerobic Treatment Processes for Novel Functionalities - University of Auckland Project Lead: Dr Shan Yi, Faculty of Engineering
  • Aeroacoustics of Ducted UAV Propellers - University of Auckland Project Lead: Dr Michael Kingan, Faculty of Engineering
  • Coupling Low-Cost Sensor Arrays with Micro-Pollutant Analysis for Developing a Robust Surface Water Quality Monitoring Network - University of Auckland Project Lead: Dr Lokesh Padhye, Faculty of Engineering
  • Invest in People Literally - The Rise of Income Share Agreements as an Alternative to Student Loans in US Higher Education - University of Auckland Project Lead: Dr Tom Baker, Faculty of Science
  • Redesign of Membrane Proteins for Molecular Selection - University of Auckland Project Lead: Associate Professor Jane Allison, Faculty of Science
  • Experiential Digital Global Engagement (EDGE) Collaboration - University of Auckland Project Lead: Professor Bernadette Luciano, Faculty of Arts

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa strategic partnership

In 2020, the University of Auckland formalised a strategic partnership with
the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa centred on our close ties through the APRU network and APAIE, our long-standing student exchange and academic cooperation, and our strong academic and research cooperation.

The University of Hawai’i partnership is being led by our Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries, and Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences with an early focus on language study, indigenous studies, urban and regional planning, and indigenous health. Initial discussions have identified opportunities to leverage long-standing faculty and research connections and to expand our student mobility programmes. As a network partner through APRU our academic and professional staff members may apply to International Central Networks and Partnerships Grant (ICNPG) for mobility support.

If you have knowledge of faculty collaborations in the context of this partnership, please contact