Skip to main content

Place and Community Framework

Purpose and Context


RMIT is an international university of technology, design and enterprise with more than 96,000 students and close to 10,000 staff globally. We are a multi-sector institution and Victoria’s largest provider of vocational education. We are an applied learning provider with a strong focus on partnering with government, industry and community. While RMIT has evolved, our purpose, to enable people and communities to adapt and thrive through learning, remains consistent.

Our founding motto, ‘Perita manus, mens exculta’ (a skilled hand, a cultivated mind) still reflects our inclusive ethos and distinctive approach to teaching, research and impact. RMIT’s central city campus and principal place of operation has been augmented by the strategic development of sites in metropolitan Melbourne (Brunswick and Bundoora), and internationally in Vietnam and Spain. In addition to these sites, RMIT offers programs internationally through partners in Singapore, Hong Kong, mainland China, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Belgium, Germany, Austria and The Netherlands.


RMIT has worked for many years to establish a clear civic focus for each of its key locations. Historically, and now explicitly within the University strategy, RMIT has committed to using our locations to enable inclusive and sustainable economic growth in line with needs of our local communities.

Across our network of locations, it is imperative that our contribution to place and community is delivered consistently and equitably. Our institutional commitment to create and oversee vibrant, inclusive innovation ecosystems is nonnegotiable. However, managing RMIT’s diversity of places and spaces brings challenges. Despite good intentions it can be difficult to ensure that institutional strategy is translated across multiple sites.

This document begins by outlining the drivers of RMIT’s place-based approach, explaining that, from its founding, the institution has been motivated to positively impact on the social, cultural and economic life of the city. It translates RMIT’s broader strategic directions and goals into six place and community principles. These provide a ‘how to’ guide for the University community seeking to understand RMIT’s approach to place and contribute to developing place-based relationships and impact. The principles will also be used to guide locations strategy decisions and subsequently inform capital planning, design and development alongside existing guidance and processes. The principles complement RMIT’s Design Standards, which set out expectations for the design of built environments across all RMIT locations.

The document also provides an overview of RMIT’s current and emerging location opportunities. This part of the document is a point in time snapshot. It offers our partners, stakeholders and RMIT community an overview of our current strengths and emerging place-based opportunities, to facilitate connections, future planning and possible partnership in these opportunities. This document advances RMIT’s commitment to place-based impact.

Community Conversation

Login to join this discussion