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UNSW Sydney President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs has announced the appointment of Professor Andrew Lynch as the new Dean of UNSW Law & Justice. He has been Acting Dean since July 2020 when Professor George Williams AO, the outgoing dean, was appointed Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Planning & Assurance) at UNSW.

Professor Lynch was Head of School and Deputy Dean for the faculty from 2017 to 2020. From 2008 to 2013, he was the Director of the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law at UNSW. Professor Lynch is an alumnus, awarded his PhD at UNSW, and has been a professor at UNSW Law & Justice since 2011.

Professor Jacobs congratulated Professor Lynch on the appointment and highlighted his strong connection to the University.

“This is a wonderful appointment for UNSW following an extensive national and international search process. Law & Justice is a world-class faculty with an abiding commitment to serving the needs of the local and global community, and to social justice. I am confident that Andrew will be a fervent champion of this mission, with a continuing focus on the contemporary challenges facing our society.

“Andrew has a deep understanding of university teaching and research as well as our external partners and stakeholders. I am grateful for his contribution as Acting Dean and know that he will continue to lead the faculty from strength to strength.

“Furthermore, in the faculty’s 50th anniversary year, as we celebrate the breadth of its achievements, it is fitting that an alumnus is appointed as Dean.”

Professor Lynch says it’s an honour to be appointed Dean of Law & Justice, particularly in the faculty’s 50th anniversary year.

“UNSW has carved out a truly distinctive place in legal education since we welcomed our first students half a century ago. We remain a global leader in our teaching, research and social justice work – and have been proud to welcome the Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice to the faculty this year.

“Our founding vision – that a law school should have ‘a keen concern for those on whom the law bears harshly’ – is as fresh and relevant as it ever was. We are living through extraordinary times and both locally and internationally we see enormous challenges – to the equality, welfare and security of vulnerable people, and of course to the environment which we all share. Law has a distinct and vitally important role to play in meeting these.”

Professor Lynch says he looks forward to the Law & Justice faculty working even more closely with colleagues across UNSW and beyond on the full gamut of contemporary problems.

“I also look forward to continuing our very deep engagement with the legal profession as it also undergoes significant human and technological change. This includes supporting a more diversified workforce and inclusive culture, and examining the impact for legal practitioners, courts and the public of increasing digitisation and new ways of working post-pandemic”.

Professor Lynch teaches and researches in the field of Australian constitutional law. His research focuses on judicial dissent and decision-making, judicial appointments, federalism and legal responses to terrorism.

He is the recipient of several Australian Research Council (ARC) grants, has authored and edited 10 books and comments regularly on legal issues in the media. Professor Lynch has been called before parliamentary and other inquiries to speak to submissions on Australia’s counter-terrorism legislative scheme, judicial regulation and other matters of public law.

Professor Lynch is a member of the Council of the Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law.