New Vice-Provost (Faculties) announced at UCL

Jennifer Hudson, UCL’s Vice-Provost (Faculties). She is smiling and lookin
Jennifer Hudson, UCL’s Vice-Provost (Faculties). She is smiling and looking into the camera, and there are sun-dappled trees in the background.
Professor Jennifer Hudson, a leading expert in political behaviour and public opinion, particularly in relation to international development and foreign aid, has been appointed as UCL’s new Vice-Provost (Faculties).

Her new role will see her taking a leading role in putting UCL’s academic mission at the forefront of our decision-making and ensuring that the voice of our academic community is amplified in all major institutional conversations.

Currently Dean of UCL’s Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences, Professor Hudson joined UCL from the University of California, Riverside, in 2004 as a Lecturer in Research Methods. She went on to build a highly impactful academic and leadership career at UCL, developing collaborations with a wide range of external organisations and government agencies to promote evidence-based policymaking, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Economic and Social Research Council, Danish Council for Independent Research, Nuffield Foundation and Leverhulme Trust.

Her key initiatives have included the establishment of the UCL Q-Step Centre, a cross-faculty initiative to deliver a step-change in quantitative social science methods, and the Development Engagement Lab, a joint project with the University of Birmingham that works with 30+ international NGOs and government agencies on public opinion and support for development, both of which she also directed.

She has also served as Head of the Department of Political Science, Vice-Dean (EDI) and Deputy Dean of Social and Historical Sciences, before becoming Dean in 2022.

Welcoming her appointment, President & Provost Dr Michael Spence said:

"We are incredibly lucky to be able to appoint such an effective, collaborative and strategic academic leader to this important role. Jennifer has a deep understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing UCL and the wider sector, and a future-thinking approach to strategy that we need in order to turn our academic ambitions into reality. I have really valued the insight and analytical thinking she has contributed to UCL’s leadership team in her role as Dean and am greatly looking forward to working with her in her new role."

Professor Hudson said:

"I am honoured to be taking up the role of Vice-Provost (Faculties) at UCL. I am particularly grateful to have the opportunity to advance the breadth and depth of research and education excellence across the institution, working in partnership with the Faculty Deans. UCL is an extraordinary institution, and I am looking forward to working with the Provost and senior leadership teams to deliver on our academic ambitions.

Professor Hudson becomes Vice-Provost (Faculties) on 1 August 2024, succeeding Professor Anthony Smith, who retires at the end of July, following a career dedicated to the service of higher education.

Professor Smith become UCL’s Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs) in 2012, after serving as Principal and Dean of the University of London School of Pharmacy and leading the merger of the School with UCL. As Vice-Provost, he led a step-change in UCL’s approach to student experience and engagement, involving students as partners in core areas such as curriculum design and development, and campus space planning. In particularly, he championed and led the delivery of a £100m estates development that included a new Student Centre at the heart of campus. He took on the wider role of Vice-Provost (Faculties) in 2021.

Dr Michael Spence said:

"Anthony has made a tremendous impact on UCL during his time here and we will hugely miss the considered insight and innovative thinking he brings to the range of projects, issues and ideas for which he is responsible. It is hard to over-state the extent to which he has shaped UCL, both figuratively and physically, and the Student Centre, which is now so central to UCL life that it is hard to imagine what life was like without it, stands as an emblem of everything he has achieved. We all wish him the very best for his well-earned retirement."
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