I lead by example; my performance makes me a credible leader of both research and teaching
endeavours in complex environments. I have strong communication skills that enable me to
effectively communicate a vision to both academic and professional staff at all levels.
I was Head of the School of Mathematics and Applied Statistics (SMAS) at UOW from 2009
to 2013. During that time we: appointed 25 new academic staff; increased our annual competitive
income by 48%; increased our consultancy income by 560%; increased our ERA score in the 01 FOR code; increased our undergraduate EFTSL by 24%; increased average
entry scores of mathematics undergraduate students; supervised the third-largest cohort
of research students in mathematical sciences in Australia; received two national teaching
citations; and were part of a successful $2M national project funded by the OLT. My interpersonal
and leadership skills were reflected in the Your Voice survey, with Engagement in the
School increasing from 87% in 2007 (the last survey prior to my appointment) to 91% in 2012
(the last survey during my tenure).
I was Deputy Chair of the ARC DECRA Selection Committee in 2012 and Chair of the Australian
Laureate Fellowships Selection Advisory Committee in 2014. I will be Head of the School of Mathematics and Statistics at USyd from 1 January 2016.
I believe that contributions to the immediate and broader community are of paramount importance to the success of individual academics, as well as the discipline and the institutions they serve. As a sample of my contributions, I have served on: the Australian Mathematics Trust Primary Problems Committee since 2003; the UOW Academic Senate 2009–2016;the ARC College of Experts 2010–2012; the Australian Academy of Sciences National Committee for the Mathematical Sciences since 2011; the ARC Australian Laureate Fellowships Selection Advisory Committee 2012–2014; and the UOW Council 2013–2015.
Leadership, Governance and Service
HEAD, SCHOOL OF MATHEMATICS AND STATISTICS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY
I have been Head of the School of Mathematics and Statistics at USyd since 1 January 2016. In my first year as Head we hired 10 ongoing academic staff, undertook major curriculum reform, improved research performance, and delivered a surplus above budget. At the institutional level I have served on appointment committees for other disciplines (3 HoS positions, one team relocation, and 3 targeted appointments), and am a member of the University Executive Education Committee and the USyd SAGE Self-Assessment Team.
HEAD, SCHOOL OF MATHEMATICS AND APPLIED STATISTICS AT UOW
I was Head of the School of Mathematics and Applied Statistics at UOW from August 2009 to December 2013. During that time I was responsible for: leading both teaching and research in the School; operationalising the UOW strategic plan; and performance management of staff. Initially I was the direct manager of all staff including all postdoctoral researchers and all four professional staff. Over time I developed a more sophisticated managerial structure with more appropriate reporting lines for staff. Throughout my time as Head, I remained responsible for the management of all Professors in the School despite being an Associate Professor at the time of my appointment.
The School thrived under my leadership. We appointed 25 new academic staff, many funded from external sources, and supervised the third-largest cohort of research students in the mathematical sciences in Australia. We increased our performance and enhanced our reputation in both research and teaching.
In research we:
In teaching and learning we:
- increased our annual income from national competitive grants by over 48% (from
$725k to $1.08M per annum), including a Future Fellow and a DECRA
- increased our annual income from consultancy by over 560% (from $449k to $2.53M per annum)
- increased our Excellence in Research in Australia (ERA) score in 01 Mathematical Sciences
from world class (3) to above world class (4).
This success was due to the hard work of the staff in the School. However, as Head my job was to provide the environment in which activities that led to these successes were valued encouraged, and supported.
There were also some challenges. Some were managerial, such as an academic whose appointment was not confirmed at the end of his probationary period. Some were critical incidents: the sudden unexpected death of a young member of staff; the suicide of a student; and the deaths of two other students in separate accidents. Although traumatic, the School emerged stronger and more united after each of these incidents.
My leadership is also reflected in the results of the Your Voice survey; the School’s overall Engagement score increased from 85% in 2007 (the last survey prior to my appointment) to 89% in 2010 and to 91% in 2012 (the last survey during my tenure).
AUSTRALIAN RESEARCH COUNCIL
As a member of the Engineering, Mathematics and Informatics panel of the ARC College,
2010–2012 I helped award: Discovery Projects, Linkage Projects, Future Fellowships, Discovery Early Career Researcher Awards (DECRAs), and Discovery Outstanding Researcher Awards (DORAs). During 2012–2014 I served on the Australian Laureate Fellowship Selection Advisory Committee. I was Deputy Chair of the DECRA panel in 2012.
RELOCATING A RESEARCH TEAM
I negotiated the relocation of a team of four mathematicians from the University of Newcastle, Australia, to the University of Wollongong, Australia, in 2007. At the time this was a complete novelty in mathematics. I was not the most senior member of the team and am still awed by the trust placed in me by my colleagues during that process.
MENTORING AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
I have a long-standing interest in professional development at all levels. As well as directing Women@UoN I have: been a mentor for the UOW Early Career Development Program since its inception four years ago; mentored a Head of School from another Faculty; mentored UOW Laureate Fellowship applicants; presented at the AustMS Early Career Workshops in 2012 and 2013; mentored postgraduate students in the mathematical sciences via the BH Neumann Prize both personally and in writing;and presented at the UOW Heads Leadership program. My role as Head of School necessarily involved mentoring, both informally and formally within the Career Development Interview process at UOW. This included career planning with outcomes ranging from promotions to successful DECRA and Future Fellowship applications.
School of Mathematics and Statistics,
University of Sydney,
NSW 2006, Australia.
T: (+61 2) 9351 4533
M: 0407 065 911