About us

Welcome to UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Confident Engineering student at team meeting

Welcome to UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering

UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering has been pursuing excellence and innovation in education and research since its foundation in 1949. We’re internationally ranked as the top school of our kind in Australia and one of the world’s top 20.

Our school offers over 14 undergraduate degrees, with one-third of our undergraduate students enrolled in double degrees. We’re committed to advancing a more prosperous, safe and just society. Our courses emphasise sustainability and consideration of engineering impacts, with an integrated and inter-connected view of the world. Our centres and discipline groups provide focal points for researchers to contribute to global efforts in innovative Civil, Environmental and Geospatial Engineering research.

Each year, we work with over 100 industry and government organisations on specific industry and community-related projects. The number and diversity of our academic staff and the breadth of our engagement with industry through our activities, allows us to bring tremendous expertise to our teaching.

Welcome from the Head of School

Engineers create vital infrastructure and protect our shared environments, both of which serve as the foundations of society. The many specialisations within the school of Civil and Environmental Engineering have long been concerned with the numerous significant disruptions which can impact humanity. The planning, design, construction, and maintenance processes and standards developed historically to safeguard against disaster have served society well. However, now, more than ever, the nation and world need creative engineers who dutifully rise to emerging challenges with innovative ways of thinking while ensuring the highest forms of professional integrity.

The hard work and quality of our staff and students has helped us become the premier school of our kind in Australia and one of the world’s top 10. However, we have an obligation to engage our innovative research capacity, field-defining educational experience, and ever-expanding network of industry engagement to collaboratively chart out a new pathway for the future of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Our vision is that we must educate our students, conduct our research, undertake professional service and pursue impactful industry engagement towards the highest interest of our national and global community. To highlight our central strategic theme, we have an absolute obligation to ensure the provision of “Ethical Infrastructure and Sustainable Environments” for all of society. In fact, it’s our ethical decision-making and duty of care that define us as a profession. As we chart our course, we invite you to join us on the path.

- Professor S Travis Waller. Head, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UNSW


Our history

From its humble yet visionary beginnings, our school has grown into one of the largest hubs of Civil and Environmental Engineering education and research in Australasia. We were the first school in the country to offer a postgraduate program with the Master of Technology degree in 1958, the first to design a BE Environmental Engineering degree in 1991 and the first to provide a BE Civil Engineering with Architecture in 2007.

Our high-achieving alumni now serve as leaders and innovators within industry, business and academia, and our research contribution is nationally and internationally recognised.

Rankings & reputation

UNSW School of Civil and Environmental Engineering is internationally ranked as number one in Australia ( Shanghai Jiao ARWU Rankings, QS World University Rankings and US News Best Global Universities) and ranked in the world's top 14 (ARWU – 8th; QS – 11th; and US News – 14th). We’re the second-largest school at UNSW Engineering, which itself is the leading faculty for engineering studies and research in Australia.

We’re at the forefront of fundamental and applied research across Civil and Environmental Engineering with strengths in Infrastructure (CIES), Water (WRC), Transport (rCITI), Geospatial Engineering and Construction Innovation. Our academic staff are recognised world leaders in their fields, supported by over 70 full-time researchers. We work with or on behalf of more than 100 industry and government organisations and are regularly awarded Federal Government grants to pursue investigations into issues of national importance.

Our research

We provide research training and a first-class research environment for over 120 higher degree research students enrolled in PhD or Masters by Research programs.

Our Research Management Committee (RMC) manages and supports research activities, including research undertaken by both the staff and the school’s postgraduate research students. The RMC is committed to improving the quality of all aspects of the postgraduate research degrees within the school.

The UNSW Learning Centre also offers a wide range of academic skills support. The school has a dedicated Postgraduate Research Coordinator to assist students with most administrative matters during their candidature.

Our people

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Contact us

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