I wanted to personally address our community about some important changes that our Vice Chancellor, Professor Ian Jacobs, announced on Wednesday 13 July at an all-staff meeting.

As you may have already heard, UNSW is moving to a new six Faculty model, merging Arts & Social Sciences with Art & Design and Built Environment to create a brand new faculty which will be a stronger, more resilient and globally competitive faculty, better placed to face an ever-changing higher education landscape. 

The current working title for the new Faculty is UNSW Arts, Architecture and Design.

Claire Annesley

I’m also very happy to let you know that I have been appointed to lead this change as the Dean of the new faculty. This exciting challenge will be an opportunity for us to innovate, reshape and future-proof arts and humanities at UNSW and remain competitive in a changed world.  

By combining our strengths and bringing together the creative arts, humanities, design and architecture into this new Faculty we are creating clearer and more attractive choices for students, and more opportunities for staff to interact with and connect their important research and teaching to colleagues across faculties and across the University as a whole. The result will be a more agile, adaptive and digitally-geared faculty.  

UNSW Arts & Social Sciences is already a strong faculty in the areas of research and teaching. Combining our existing strengths with those of Art & Design and Built Environment will allow us to play a more central role in the University. Our links to industry are especially important, and this approach mirrors what is happening in Australia and across the world in creative spheres.    

I do hope you are as excited about this new approach as I am, and I look forward to sharing more details about these changes as they develop. 

I’m especially grateful to Professors Ross Harley and Helen Lochhead who have led such strong and well-respected faculties and will be working closely with me on the transition in the coming weeks. I am privileged to work alongside such impressive colleagues whose commitment to providing a world-class education for our students has been unwavering as the University has tackled the tough decisions which I know have been incredibly stressful and difficult for so many people. We still have difficult times ahead of us, especially as we will be expected to contribute to the reduction of staff. However we will do what we can to support everyone in the faculty as best we can. 

Our entire community has always played an integral role in the success of our faculty and I thank you for continuing to support excellent student education, student experience and research as we move into a new future for Arts at UNSW.

All the best,

Professor Claire Annesley 

Dean, Arts & Social Sciences 

Professor Claire Annesley