Dean Search

Mosaic ceiling at Sutton Hall, UT Austin
Dean Search

The University of Texas at Austin, a member of the Association for American Universities and one of the nation’s premier centers for academic excellence, seeks a dean of the School of Architecture. The dean will provide inspirational, strategic, and entrepreneurial leadership to one of the nation's leading schools for research and teaching in the design and planning of the built environment. Reporting to the executive vice president and provost, the dean serves as the chief academic and administrative officer of the school and will set an ambitious course for the School of Architecture that continues its trajectory of excellence and impact.

The University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture takes pride in its role in educating and training stewards of the built environment, melding principle and practice to foster innovation while remaining grounded in serving its communities. The school is cross-disciplinary with a strong design reputation and global reach that includes professional and academic programs in architecture, landscape architecture, community and regional planning, interior design, architectural history, historic preservation, sustainable design, and urban design. The School of Architecture offers degrees at the bachelor, master, and doctoral levels. Its disciplines play a key role in addressing complex, local, regional, national, and global issues while advancing a better quality of life for all of society’s members. Essential to this work is the school’s dedication to fostering a learning environment that welcomes a variety of perspectives and backgrounds which are crucial to addressing collective societal concerns.

With a budget of approximately $12 million, the school comprises over 100 tenured, tenure-track, and professional-track faculty members, more than twenty staff members, and approximately 350 undergraduate and 350 graduate students. It is housed in four extraordinary buildings located in the heart of the original campus and adjacent to the vibrant western edge of campus.

The successful candidate will present a distinguished record of achievement in research and/or practice, education, leadership, and administration. They will demonstrate impeccable judgment and an uncompromising dedication to academic excellence, demonstrate a commitment to promoting cultural diversity within the design professions and intellectual diversity within the curriculum, an unwavering ethical compass, and evidence a devotion to interdisciplinary collaboration. A transparent and enthusiastic communicator, the dean will collaboratively cultivate, develop, and implement a vision for the school’s future, establish and pursue clear strategic priorities, and raise and manage resources effectively to steadily advance those priorities.

The University of Texas at Austin is engaged in an international search for candidates. Review of applications will begin in February, although nominations and applications will be accepted until the position is filled. It is anticipated that the dean will be appointed with a start date during Summer 2023.


    The dean oversees all areas of the school’s mission. The dean is responsible for academic and scholarly leadership and serves as the school’s primary representative to alumni, the Advisory Council, local government stakeholders, industry, and other partners. Overseeing a budget of approximately $12 million, the dean is responsible for advancing the School of Architecture’s internationally recognized programs in next-generation leadership for design and planning research and education. Specifically, the dean is charged with promoting a culture of innovation and advancing the vision, operations, and services of the school through strategic decisions regarding faculty and staff, administration, academic programs, and development functions. The dean also serves as an important institutional leader of the university’s leadership team and reports to the executive vice president and provost.

    The next dean of the School of Architecture should have a distinguished reputation based on professional practice, scholarship, and/or research accomplishments, and will have earned credentials meriting appointment at the rank of professor with tenure in one or more disciplines within the school. The successful candidate will have experience that demonstrates leadership, superb management, excellent communication skills, and a record of achievement related to diversity, inclusivity, and equity as well as community engagement and public service – locally and globally.

    Current direct reports to the dean include the associate dean for academic affairs; associate dean for research + technology; assistant dean for student affairs; assistant dean for finance + administration; executive director for development; communications coordinator; and assistant to the dean.


      To ensure the School of Architecture’s growth and academic distinction, the next dean will address the following key opportunities and specific challenges:

      Articulate and Execute a Compelling Vision for the Future of the School of Architecture
      The dean will collaborate with the School of Architecture faculty, staff, students, and alumni to build upon the strong foundation of the school’s successes, identify strategic priorities that leverage its strengths and distinction, and prepare students to help solve some of the most pressing societal challenges. In concert with the university’s new strategic plan, the next dean will provide visionary leadership cognizant of the rapidly shifting higher education landscape and the need for innovation in schools and colleges of Architecture. The dean must have an ability to balance theory, research, and practice while bringing a collaborative approach to navigating the school, the university, and local and global communities. With strategic focus in mind, the dean needs to capitalize on the multiplicity of programs and perspectives within the school and foster a culture that encourages and empowers faculty, staff, and students to explore new ways of thinking and creating.

      Support and Enhance Teaching, Practice, and Research
      The dean will assure the continued prominence of the faculty by prioritizing the recruitment and retention of distinguished and diverse faculty at all levels. The dean will be expected to work with the School of Architecture community to promote wide-ranging and impactful research that elevates the standards of excellence. The dean will demonstrate support and recognition for all disciplines within the School of Architecture; be well versed in the standards and process of tenure review at a top research university; appreciate and foster research, practice, and teaching; increase curricular flexibility and accessibility throughout all programs; and foster innovation. The dean will also lead efforts around the recruitment, mentorship, and retention of the student body from undergraduate to Ph.D. To successfully recruit and retain the best talent, the dean must not only create an environment that supports cutting-edge scholarship, engages and develops a responsive curriculum, and elevates planning and design work, but also be able to communicate the School of Architecture’s mission and vision in a way that compels leaders in architecture, design, planning, and related disciplines to join the effort.

      Serve As a Visible Champion for the Critical Role of Architecture, Planning, and Design Across the University and Beyond
      The School of Architecture has a history of advocating for the critical importance of shaping the built environment to improve lives in an ever-changing world. The dean will be expected to serve both as a steadfast spokesperson and advocate for the school as well as a collaborative and engaged university citizen and community member. The dean will be an academic leader as a contributing member of the faculty, and as such lead by example. Extending the reach of the School of Architecture, the dean will connect with university leaders, alumni, donors, policymakers, and other external audiences to promote the school’s successes and ambitions. The dean will embrace the history and rich culture of the School of Architecture and continue to support the numerous opportunities for design, education, research, practice, and creative collaboration. The dean will engage and strengthen the relationship with the city of Austin, capitalize on industry connections the school has already established, and seek new opportunities in Austin, the state of Texas, and across the globe.

      Build Collaboration Within the School and Across the Campus
      The dean will take advantage of a robust and distinctive school and institutional environment, working to increase interdisciplinary collaboration, cross-program teaching, research, and practice, and place the School of Architecture in the midst of--indeed, in the forefront of--intellectual and planning conversations across campus. The dean will endeavor to support the faculty in their own teaching and research, and to construct with the faculty an exceptional environment in which to learn for the students. There is a tremendous opportunity for the school to contribute and benefit from collaborations within its programs and with other schools. Working together with faculty, staff, students and fellow deans, the next leader will identify new opportunities for cross-disciplinary, inter-school partnerships, research, and initiatives, and should develop creative strategies for better integrating the School of Architecture’s students and faculty within the greater UT community. The dean must communicate the contributions, value, and vision of the school to a wide audience.

      Maintain and Enhance the School’s Financial Strength
      While the School of Architecture is financially sound, the dean will work closely with development staff, university leadership, alumni, the Advisory Council, students, and faculty to develop compelling and effective opportunities to attract philanthropic and research support. Partnering with the school’s development team and the University, the dean will be a passionate and energized fundraiser. Cultivating both new and existing donors, the school has increased its fundraising activity considerably in recent years. Sponsored research activities also contribute directly to the school’s financial health. It is expected that the new dean will undertake an ambitious program of raising additional resources, supporting faculty to pursue large research grants and contracts, responsibly and strategically managing and deploying resources, and spearheading efforts to generate earned revenue.

      The dean will closely monitor critical financial issues for the school and continue to enhance accessibility of courses and generate and operationalize strategies to minimize student financial burden. Aiming for transparency in financial decision-making, the dean will communicate clearly to the community regarding the school’s financial commitments and status within the broader context of the University’s financial landscape.

      Strengthen Operational Infrastructure and Enhance Support for the entire School of Architecture community
      The dean oversees a large and complex operation, which depends on the contributions of a dedicated team of faculty, staff, students, and administrators. The dean will lead in building and maintaining an organizational infrastructure with consultative and collaborative decision-making processes that integrate expertise from multiple School of Architecture constituencies. The dean will provide leadership on the school’s long-standing commitment to initiatives that redress the lack of cultural diversity and inclusion within the professions, as well as continuing to improve the intellectual and community life across its student, faculty, and staff populations. The dean will be attentive to faculty and staff retention and professional development and will work closely with program leadership to invest in key functions and positions to ensure a cohesive, efficient, and high-performing school, providing faculty and staff opportunities to grow and advance within roles and areas of expertise, supporting pathways to success. A continual emphasis on internal communication is a key component of motivating the entire school community, helping all to feel included in the progress toward its goals and objectives. Overall, the dean will strive to represent a wide range of interests under a common vision and provide professional development and mentorship.


        The School of Architecture seeks in its next dean an exceptional leader with energy, ambition, and entrepreneurial creativity. While no single candidate will meet all the qualifications, the search committee expects that candidates will demonstrate many of the following personal qualities and professional skills and experiences to inspire and lead the School of Architecture to new levels of excellence:

        • Academic or professional qualifications within one or more of the school’s teaching fields, a terminal degree, an outstanding record of academic and/or professional achievement, and scholarly and creative impact commensurate with an appointment as a full professor with tenure.
        • A record of providing motivational leadership and effective management of a complex organization.
        • Intellectual depth and strategic abilities; the capacity to translate ideas into actions.
        • Demonstrated success in establishing a vision and executing a strategic plan, experience with the alignment of resources with strategic goals.
        • A global outlook, with a strong commitment to realizing the potential contributions of the School of Architecture to strengthening strategic engagement with local, national, and international communities and with partners in industry and government.
        • Demonstrated administrative capability: the ability to delegate, prioritize, and make timely, transparent, and collaborative decisions.
        • A record of promoting cultural equity, diversity, and inclusivity within the disciplines/professions, with the necessary experience to create institutional supports that enhance the retention of underrepresented faculty and students within the school.
        • Experience in faculty and staff recruitment and development, and in supporting the unique needs of a diverse community of practicing professionals and scholars.
        • Demonstrated fundraising experience and success.
        • Financial acumen and a record of fiduciary transparency and accountability.
        •  Ability to be an effective spokesperson and strong advocate for the school; an excellent communicator.
        • Demonstrated support for traditional and emerging technologies and the development of cutting-edge curricula.
        • A dedication to the mission and vision of the University of Texas at Austin and the School of Architecture.
        • An unwavering ethical compass, and a tireless advocate for excellence in research, teaching, practice, and public service.