Professor Callum Firth
Dean of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Social Sciences
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From 2002 to 2015, I was Head of the University of Brighton's School of Environment and Technology. The School delivered courses in Archaeology, the Built Environment, Civil Engineering, Environmental Science, Geography and Geology. For a period of about four years, I was also responsible for courses in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, and Product Design. The School generated between £1.2-2.2m of research and knowledge exchange income each year, improved its RAE/REF (Research Assessment Exercise/Research Excellence Framework) scores and had high levels of retention and student satisfaction.
Prior to this, between 1994 and 2002, I was Head of the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences at Brunel University. The Department was at the forefront of course innovation and had high levels of student satisfaction and progression, and also had a growing research profile.
I am Professor of Physical Geography and my main research interests are around geomorphology, sea level change, environmental change and environmental hazards. My work has included funded research on coastal evolution, environmental change and sea level changes.
I’m also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy with teaching expertise in physical geography, environmental change and environmental hazards. I have also developed a number of courses in Geography and Environmental Sciences.
As the Dean of the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Social Sciences, I am responsible for the achievement of the Strategic Plan’s objectives within my faculty, which includes the Business School and the schools of Human and Life Sciences, Law, Criminal Justice and Computing, and Psychology, Politics and Sociology.
I am also the SMT lead for sustainability and the Aurora Leadership Programme.
What are your current priorities?
A current priority for me is working with Helen James to establish Engineering within the University. The aim is to develop an innovative project-based curriculum in Engineering, Product Design and Technology, which will attract under-represented groups – for example, females and white working-class males – into engineering and ensure that they are work-ready when they graduate. To achieve this, we are looking to work with a wide variety of schools and professional services departments across the University as well as establish partnerships with companies and local government organisations.
What inspires you about Christ Church?
The key reason I was attracted to Christ Church is its commitment to transforming people's lives. The focus on teaching and research is another key strength, as is our commitment to ensuring staff, students and the local community benefit from our activities.
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