Appointment of the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing

Welcome

Dear Candidate

Thank you for expressing an interest in joining Kingston University, London as Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing.

With a community of 18,000 students from over 140 countries and 2,000 staff, the University offers an extensive range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses to equip its students with the skills and knowledge they will need in the 21st Century’s demanding workplace.  It aims to develop potential, transform lives and improve the world around it. It does this through a creative approach to education that has practical outcomes benefitting people and communities.

The University is reorganising its Faculty structure in August 2022 and our existing Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing will become the new Faculty of Engineering and Computing.

We are now seeking to appoint the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing, who will be responsible for the strategic leadership of the Faculty and will lead the delivery of high-quality teaching, research and external partnerships. The new Dean will support staff through a period of change as we transition to the new Faculty structure and ensure that we offer a contemporary and attractive course portfolio and delivers excellent student and research outcomes.

With relevant management experience, a strong track record of academic achievement in a relevant discipline and experience of leading change, the successful candidate will also bring a deep commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion. A track record of partnership working is essential, as is an inclusive approach to leadership and an unwavering commitment to delivering an outstanding student experience.

The Dean reports directly to myself, is a member of the University senior leadership team and plays an important role in University decision-making at the highest level. The Dean will also have Pro Vice-Chancellor responsibility which will be agreed as part of the appointment.

You can find out more about our university and the role on this website. Our advertising consultants at Anderson Quigley would also be pleased to discuss the role with you and their details can also be found on this site.

This is an exceptional opportunity to shape the future of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing at a bold and forward-thinking university which has taken great strides forward in recent years, as evidenced by our top 50 placing in the 2022 Guardian University Guide.

Yours faithfully

Professor Steven Spier
Vice-Chancellor

About us

Kingston University is the largest higher education provider in southwest London, with students from more than 140 countries and is financially stable with an income of around £200 million. We offer a comprehensive range of undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral study programmes, providing students with a choice of subjects reflecting their interests and the needs of industry. Our graduates are sought-after for their academic achievements and their ability to shape society and contribute to the economy. Our academic performance is reflected in our position in the market – we are one of the top 50 institutions in the country *.

We value diversity and inclusivity and our thriving, buzzing campuses, within easy reach of central London, are a living example of our ideals and aspirations. With a focus on innovation, enterprise, creativity and design, we lead the way in student start-ups and our students embrace creative opportunities through initiatives such as innovation competitions, volunteering programmes and hackathons, to bring disciplines together to solve real-life economic and scientific challenges.

We have worked hard over the last few years to drive up academic standards and improve the student experience at Kingston. We are about to engage our staff and students on a new strategy that will build on our strengths and prepare our staff and students with skills for the future as identified in our future skills report.

* Guardian League Table 2022 

Student profile
As of 1 December 2020, we have 18,071 students. Our students include:

  • 12,772 undergraduate/foundation level students and 5,299 postgraduate students
  • 14,038 home/EU students and 4,033 overseas students

Investing in our students’ future
We provide excellent facilities for our students and staff and we continue to invest for the future. Designed by the RIBA Gold Medal winning firm Grafton Architects, our new multi-million pound building, Town House which won the prestigeous RIBA Stirling Prize 2021, transforms the teaching and learning experience for students and staff and acts as a gateway to the University for its wider community and region. Featuring a multi-floor academic library and archive alongside dance studios and a studio theatre, plus cafes, courtyards and rooftop terraces, Town House allows informal learning, research and performance to take place organically under one roof.

Our research 
Research is integral to Kingston University’s distinctiveness, success and sustainability and it plays a vital part in contributing to the quality of our learning and teaching. We are dedicated to excellence and high impact in research through a variety of cutting-edge projects and the development of multi-disciplinary centres of research excellence. We have a broad range of research which is industry-acclaimed and has global impact through the University’s international networks.

In REF 2014, 60 per cent of our research was considered either world leading or internationally excellent. We are growing our research reputation through fostering a collaborative, outward-looking research culture across the Institution. Our researchers are working with key industry partners across the full range of our disciplines, from Jaguar Land Rover and BAE Systems to the British Film Institute and the Venice Biennale.

Our locations 
The University is located across four campuses in and around Kingston upon Thames. Our campuses are not only welcoming and supportive environments for students and staff, they are also home to incredible learning facilities. With laboratories and studios, modern classrooms, lecture theatres and libraries, our campuses also include dedicated postgraduate study centres, virtual learning tools, 24/7 online learning support, specialist computer suites and many more additional study spaces.

Penrhyn Road campus

Within walking distance of Kingston town centre, this campus is busy, lively, cosmopolitan and home to the winner of the 2021 Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Stirling Prize Townhouse building. There is a range of cafés, bars and restaurants on site. It also has central University facilities such as the fitness centre, health centre, student restaurant, the Union of Kingston Students and the Student Life Centre, which provides services such as accommodation and finance advice.

Kingston School of Art, Knights Park campus

Set in a riverside location, a short walk from Kingston town centre and the Penrhyn Road campus. The restaurant and bar are right next to the picturesque Hogsmill River, providing a tranquil backdrop for breaks in between lectures.

Kingston Hill campus

A beautiful, leafy, self-contained site with a mix of modern and historic buildings and a community feel. The campus boasts a cafe, restaurant, bar, Subway and Starbucks as well as halls of residence, tennis courts, bee hives and a nature walk.

Roehampton Vale campus

Purpose-built and completely dedicated to the study of engineering. The campus is just a bus ride or short drive from Kingston and within walking distance of Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common.

You can find out more about our University at https://www.kingston.ac.uk/

Vision and mission

Our vision, mission and corporate plan
Our corporate plan puts students at the very centre of everything we do, providing a strategic framework and narrative to take our university forward.

Vision
Our students will be sought after for their academic achievements, and their ability to shape society and contribute to the economy.

Mission
To enhance students’ life chances through inspiring learning, advancing knowledge, innovating professional practice and engaging with society.

Our students will:

  • study a curriculum that equips them with the academic, social, and personal skills to prosper in global and diverse environments
  • value their own diversity of backgrounds, identities and experiences
  • learn in an environment of encouragement and support
  • be part of a physical and virtual campus community
  • have varied and extensive opportunities to enhance their practical and professional skills

Our staff will:

  • engage with the latest scholarship, research and professional practice to deliver the best possible teaching, curriculum, and student experience
  • produce research that has impact and contributes to a vibrant learning culture
  • have a commitment to inclusive higher education and to helping develop social capital
  • have a diversity of backgrounds and identities
  • be supported in developing their skills and abilities

Our local and global community will:

  • seek our research and expertise for its impact on culture, society and industry
  • seek our students and graduates as employees, partners and providers of services
  • benefit from our commitment to sustainability and support for local and regional communities and groups

Working at Kingston University

There are 2,000 people working at Kingston and 18,000 students learning with us, every year. We provide 260 undergraduate, postgraduate and apprenticeship degrees, from fashion to entrepreneurship, from nursing to engineering.

Which means you’ll enjoy a diverse and stimulating environment. With all sorts of people to meet and learn from. You’ll get opportunities to develop your skills and career. And work with people you like being around. In addition, making education open to all is central to what we believe. And this applies to working here too. By making our workplace open to people of all backgrounds, the better we become as an organisation.

Which makes work a safe, fair and happy place for you.

We welcome staff and students from all kinds of backgrounds
Here’s some of our achievements in the area of diversity and inclusion:

  • We’re one of only 20 UK institutions recognised for equality with a Race Equality Charter bronze award.
  • We achieved the Athena SWAN bronze award for our commitment to advancing gender equality in the workplace.
  • 43 per cent of our students come from homes as the first generation to attend university.
  • We’re in the top 10 Universities in the country for social mobility.
  • 63 per cent of students and 23 per cent of staff identify as Asian, Black and minority ethnic. Extra support is given to UK undergraduate students who are part of the following groups: care leavers, care experienced students, young adult carers, and those estranged from their families, to complete their studies and graduate. The University has one of the country’s most diverse student populations, with 63 per cent of our student body coming from minority ethnic backgrounds.

Living and working in Kingston makes for a happier, healthier life
That’s why many local people, skilled and talented at what they do, choose to work at Kingston University rather than commuting to London. Because working closer to home means less travel, better work-life balance and more time with family and friends.

When working here we hope you’ll feel inspired and motivated too, by the investment we make to our buildings and environs. Such as our incredible new Town House building, where you, your colleagues, students and the community can meet, work and study under one roof.

What’s more, Kingston has four campuses, there’s a free, and frequent, bus service between locations. So, you can relax, save time and meet more people on the way.

Many skilled and talented people decide to re-locate to Kingston – attracted by the potential for career development at the University, together with Kingston’s relaxed, healthy lifestyle and easy access to the thrills of London. Giving you the best of both worlds. Plus, Kingston is part of Greater London, so the University enjoys the excitement of a diverse city campus, without needing to live or work in the capital.

Highlights of our performance

  • Kingston University is ranked in the UK’s top 50 in the 2022 Guardian University Guide. The University also topped the ranking in London for fashion and textiles and nursing and midwifery.
  • Kingston is ranked the UK’s top 10 universities for social mobility in a report released by the Institute for Fiscal Studies in partnership with the Sutton Trust and the Department for Education.
  • In October 2021, Town House was named winner of the 2021 Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Stirling Prize, confirming it as Britain’s best new building. Designed by RIBA Gold Medal-winning Grafton Architects, the landmark building on the Penrhyn Road campus carried off the highest accolade in United Kingdom architecture at a prestigious ceremony at Coventry cathedral.
  • In November 2021, two engineering solutions designed by school pupils and brought to life by University technicians and students were awarded Primary Engineer MacRobert Medals at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow.
  • On campus, the Bernie Hub, a new learning social space named after aerospace engineering graduate Anita Bernie, now strategy and execution lead at KISPE Space Systems, was officially opened at Roehampton Vale.
  • 60% of the University’s research submission was rated as world-leading or internationally excellent in REF 2014.

The Faculty

The Faculty of Engineering and Computing will be launched in August 2022 and is comprised of two schools – Engineering and the Environment, and Computer Science and Mathematics – bringing together interdisciplinary research, improving the scope of the student experience and encouraging partnerships between academia and commerce.

Through a collaborative approach, the Faculty offers greater access to resources, knowledge and information and a broader perspective on its subjects, with teaching and research staff working more closely with their colleagues in other disciplines.

Practice-based learning
Our students benefit from a practice-based, hands-on education informed by innovative research to ensure our graduates have the skills and knowledge required to work in the industry.

Interdisciplinary work
Across our courses we aim to provide a collaborative way of working that allows our graduates to develop key skills, knowledge and practice.

Links with the industry
We pride ourselves on promoting strong industrial involvement in all our degree programmes, ensuring our courses are at the forefront of the discipline.

World-class facilities
Our industry standard laboratories and equipment provide plenty of opportunities to put theory into practice and gain valuable experience using the tools that students will find in the workplace – as well as some more unique equipment too.

Current student numbers

School of Computer Science and Mathematics:

  • PG: 904 (61 – UK, 843 – International)
  • UG: 1191 (931 – UK, 260 – International)

Department of Computer Science:

  • PG: 467 (13 – UK, 454 – International)
  • UG: 796 (607 – UK, 189 – International)

Department of Networks and Digital Media:

  • PG: 437 ( 48 – UK, 389 – International)
  • UG: 395 ( 324 – UK, 71 – International)

School of Engineering and the Environment:

  • PG: 901 (95 – UK, 806 – International)
  • UG: 1633 (1333 – UK, 300 – International)

Department of Aerospace and Aircraft Engineering:

  • PG: 51 (13 – UK, 38 – International)
  • UG: 661 (546 – UK, 115 – International)

Department of Civil Engineering, Surveying and Construction:

  • PG: 323 (51 – UK, 272 – International)
  • UG: 508 (403 – UK, 105 – International)

Department of Geography, Geology and the Environment:

  • PG: 24 (7 – UK, 17 – International)
  • UG: 164 (155 – UK, 9 – International)

Department of Mechanical Engineering:

  • PG: 503 (24 – UK, 479 – International)
  • UG: 300 (229 – UK,71 – International)

You can read more about the current Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing here. Science courses will be moving out of the Faculty from August 2021.

The role

Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Computing

Job reference:
AQ1315

This is a unique and exciting opportunity, at the head of a complex faculty, requiring the delivery of visible leadership and direction both within the School and Kingston University, and to the wider engineering and computing sectors in the UK and internationally.

The Dean will be at the forefront of ensuring their faculty operates as truly exceptional with a culture of pride and excitement in all who live and work there and contributing explicitly to the distinctive profile and positioning of their disciplines in the UK and beyond. Candidates will have a high degree of credibility in the Engineering and Computing sector, founded on a substantial record of achievement in the field as an academic or practitioner.

The Dean is a member of the University senior leadership team and the leader of the faculty. In that capacity, this person plays an important role in the definition and development of University policy and decision-making at the highest level. The Dean will also have Pro Vice-Chancellor responsibility which will be agreed as part of the appointment.

Crucially, whatever their background, they will have the confidence of the academic community, be able to set the tone for the institution, and will quickly demonstrate:

  • Strong, visible and effective leadership qualities, with evident people management skills;
  • Evident change management experience, with the ability to inspire colleagues and unite them around common and shared purpose;
  • Capacity for strategic thinking and the ability to develop plans that take account of the issues facing the higher education and engineering and computing sectors;
  • Superb communication, influencing and networking skills;
  • Inspirational leadership qualities to navigate the School through change, building on its record of achievement and reinvigorating an academic community of the highest quality;
  • Broad management experience and skills including financial management; and
  • A real passion for the education, engineering and computing sectors and their continuing relevance based on practical experience as a leader, and a determination to see them flourish.

Working closely with the University Senior Leadership Team, staff and students across the Faculty, and external stakeholders, regionally, nationally and internationally, the successful candidate will be expected to:

  • Create a high performing Faculty, nurturing talent, releasing potential and ensuring staff are engaged, flexible and agile, with a desire to achieve, and are equipped to meet the needs of the changing HE agenda;
  • Develop and engage with Faculty colleagues to implement the Faculty’s vision and strategy, combining current strengths and opportunities with new ideas and leading it into its next stage of development;
  • Lead on the development, implementation and review of strategies and policies for the Faculty to instil a high quality, performance orientated culture, valuing all those who work and study at the Faculty and focussed on the achievement of Kingston’s strategic goals;
  • Embed Faculty policies and processes that support and promote the University’s commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion, embedding the culture of “opportunity for all”;
  • Ensure that the Faculty’s organisational capability is aligned with its mission and strategic objectives, leading a team which will deliver academically and operationally;
  • Optimise the Faculty’s financial strategy, ensuring continued financial sustainability and developing opportunities for new income streams;
  • Continue to encourage a high quality, performance-orientated culture, valuing all those who work and study at the School and focused on the achievement of the institution’s strategic goals;

A full list of the deliverables can be found in the attached Job Description.

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Candidates will inspire confidence and trust and be able to demonstrate:

  1. A highly credible and strong academic leader in a relevant discipline;
  2. Strong demonstrable experience of strategic leadership and change management in a large scale, complex environment within the HE sector;
  3. Evidence of strategic transformational change activity and collaborative working across multidisciplinary teams;
  4. Highly regarded, visible and supportive people leader with a commitment to people development, excellence, equality of opportunity and diversity;
  5. Strategic vision and the ability to bring together the Faculty disciplines in the delivery of a fresh and relevant perspective on established strengths and opportunities, encouraging creativity and innovation but grounded on realistic and achievable goals;
  6. Credibility as a leader with an understanding of the importance of world-leading and internationally excellent research.
  7. Ability to foster a strong performance ethos and a culture of taking pride in personal and collective accountability in delivery of excellence in all areas; empowering others to give their best; proven experience as an agent of change, decisive and accountable with the passion and gravitas to win hearts and minds;
  8. Proven experience as an agent of change, decisive and accountable with the passion and charisma to win hearts and minds;
  9. Proven financial, resource and project management skills, along with planning abilities and the ability to generate income;
  10. Entrepreneurial and commercial acumen;
  11. An understanding of the internationalisation of higher education and the development of a national and international higher education brand; and
  12. Proven networking and interpersonal skills and personal qualities of positivity, energy and engagement with all including the industries and sectors in the UK and internationally.

Terms of appointment

A competitive salary will be negotiated with the successful candidate.

We offer a range of workplace benefits, including:

  • Teachers Pension Scheme
  • 35 days holiday plus bank holidays
  • personal development plan
  • training, development funds and access to University study
  • season ticket loan
  • cycle-to-work scheme
  • employee assistance programme
  • discounted gym membership, use of our sports ground, fitness centre and complementary therapy clinic

To find out more about our benefits, please click here.

How to apply

Anderson Quigley is acting as an advisor to the University, an executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.

Should you wish to discuss the role in strict confidence, please contact Elliott Rae on +44(0)7584 078 534; elliott@andersonquigley.com, or Imogen Wilde on +44(0)7864 652 633; imogen@andersonquigley.com.

The closing date for applications is noon on Friday 11 February 2022.

Completed applications should be uploaded at www.andersonquigley.com/candidates using the reference AQ1315

Applications should consist of:

  • A full CV.
  • A covering letter (maximum of two pages) setting out your interest in the role and details of how you match the criteria in the person specification.
  • Please include current salary details and the names and addresses of two referees in either your CV or covering letter. Referees will not be approached until the final stages and not without prior permission from candidates.
  • Please complete the following online Equal Opportunity Monitoring Form.