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University appoints new Pro Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement

Professor Michele Acuto

28 February 2024

The University of Bristol is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor Michele Acuto to the post of Pro Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement.

Professor Acuto joins us from the University of Melbourne, where he is Director of the cross-campus Melbourne Centre for Cities, a strategic city-university partnership for Melbourne, as well as Professor and Vice Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning. He will take up the role from 1 June and will be responsible for shaping Bristol's global civic agenda, profile and reputation.

He will also provide strategic leadership and oversight of the University’s international and internationalisation initiatives, with a particular focus on activities and partnerships of University-wide strategic importance that support and enhance the University's global civic engagement objectives.

Professor Acuto joined the University of Melbourne in 2018, following positions at University College London and University of Oxford, having been educated in Australia and Singapore.  He has extensive university leadership track record alongside significant diplomatic experience outside academia on urban development and global governance.

His research on the relation between cities and global challenges has received over $38 million in named research funding with an extensive publication record and regular partnership with UN agencies, local governments and the private and philanthropic sectors. He is an interdisciplinary urban studies scholar whose work crosses Social Sciences and Built Environment and Humanities, as well as Engineering. At Bristol, he will take up a role as Professor of Urban Resilience in the School of Geographical Sciences.

Professor Acuto said: “It’s incredibly exciting to join such a committed civic and global engagement mission with a clear aim to drive tangible change. I have long admired Bristol’s unique edge and cannot wait to lend a helping hand to its global civic aspirations.”

Professor Judith Squires, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost of the University of Bristol, said: “I am delighted with Michele’s appointment to this crucially important leadership role at Bristol. He will be a great addition to our executive team as we seek to strengthen our reputation as one of the world’s most successful global civic universities.”

Professor Evelyn Welch, Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Bristol, said: “Michele brings a wealth of international and interdisciplinary experience to this important role and I am delighted to welcome him to Bristol."

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