How are architecture schools responding to the 15% funding cuts? Coursework masters are threatened, retiring senior staff are being replaced by part-timers, and some schools expect reprives via amalgamation.
Old woolstores on Geelong’s Corio Bay, converted by McGlashan & Everist to house Deakin’s architecture school.
New Zealand academic Mark Burry (a Sagrada Familia and Gaudì expert) became the School of Architecture and Building’s professor in mid-1996. Aspro Nick Beattie continues as head of school and Helen Tippett shifts back from visiting professor (on leave from Victoria University, Wellington) to adjunct professor • The school has settled into its new home, old woolstores overlooking Corio Bay near the city. The new set-up, designed by Geelong architects McGlashan and Everist, includes 12 space-flexible studios for students of all years.
Professor Judith Brine, formerly Dean of Environmental Design at UCanberra, has been appointed Head of a new UAdelaide division combining law, performing arts, economics, commerce and architecture • School-leaver first preferences to join the renamed School of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Design were up by 25 percent this year-perhaps because the B.Arch process has been reduced from six to five years (in line with other universities) and a new L.Arch degree has been introduced, headed by David Jones • Overseas student numbers quadrupled (from around five to 20) last year and are rising, says Professor Terry Wilkinson, Dean of Architecture and Urban Design • There are plans to develop a Centre for Asian and Middle Eastern Architecture, to be directed by Islamic expert Samer Akkach and staffed by Stanislaus Fung (China specialist), Peter Scriver (colonial India) and Julian Worrall (Japan); possibly collaborating with the University of Sydney • After a successful test last year, another batch of fourth years are due to do a program at Hanoi Architecture University-which has 6500 students.
The Department of Architecture has ended its association with social sciences to join one of seven new super-faculties: Engineering, Physical Sciences and Architecture. Michael Keniger has acccepted a three-year contract to head the department and there’s hope that the new faculty will attract slightly higher funding for architecture • UQ graduates Donovan Hill have been refitting the department’s premises, including an area recently exited by planning • There are no high-level staff changes and the department still doesn’t have a professor.
The Department of Architecture’s joint venture with the University of Kuala Lumpur enters its fourth year with a second batch of KL-trained third years arriving in Perth for either one more year of study (B.AppSci (Arch Sci)) or three (B.Arch) • Curtin is helping the Northern Territory University to run its architecture program in Darwin • The head of architecture, Professor Laurie Hegvold, is taking leave for the second semester, replaced by his deputy, Aspro Neville d’Cruz.
Replacing Professor Judith Brine as Dean of Environmental Design is an industrial designer/engineer, Professor Livio Bonollo. He was still reviewing the faculty when we called-presumably noting the current lack of a professor or aspro to teach architecture. The senior lecturers are Don Dunbar, Jean-Pierre Favre and Janice Birkeland.
Two chairs of architecture and one of landscape architecture are being advertised to start in 1998-but all the ‘departing’ professors are being encouraged by Dean Ross King to keep offices in the faculty. Sustainability specialist Alan Rodger and urbanist David Yencken have officially retired but “may be bribed” to continue teaching, while monographs guru Haig Beck, with one more year on his contract, has been asked to continue heading an expanding publications division which includes UME (international projects journal), EYES (undergraduate work) and Critiques (masters projects) • Six new lecturers have been appointed to raise the calibre of research and supervision of an increasing number of PhD students (around 30 in architecture). New architects on board are Drs Greg Missingham, Guo Tsing-Hua and Bharat Dave • Dr Janet Schapper is heading the L.Arch program this year • Dean King’s agenda is strong on international links: he’s hoping to foster a Pacific Rim academic “circuit” and international CAD-conferenced studios. Meanwhile, the faculty is joining the ‘Universitas 21’ network, linking the universities of Melbourne, NSW and Queensland with others in Scotland, England, San Francisco and Auckland.
Departed senior lecturer Andrew Metcalf, who has moved to Canberra to practice, is being replaced by young part-timers yet to be named • The Department of Architecture is publishing four books by its staff to coincide with Newcastle’s Bicentennial this year: three are architectural histories of the region and one is a photographic and philosophical essay on hidden spaces in the city •Michael Ostwald has taken one year’s study leave, mainly in the United States.
NEW SOUTH WALES
Professor Chung Tong Wu enters his second year as Dean of the Built Environment with kudos for efficient management. In late January, he called an all-staff retreat at Coogee Beach to discuss the faculty’s future- outcomes were not known at press deadline • A university restructure is likely to kill the School of Landscape Architecture but retain a program within architecture or urban planning. The former head, Professor James Weirick-who has influenced several government decisions on the Olympics and other city projects-is expected to stay but other stalwarts-Aspro Finn Thorbaldson (school founder) and senior lecturer Helen Armstrong-have left • Outstanding landscape graduate Christopher Walsh won the inaugural Belt Collins Australia Design Prize for his ‘Metro Corridor’ scheme near Sydney Airport • Like other universities with a high proportion of foreign enrolments (eg. RMIT, Curtin), UNSW teachers face dilemmas about how to mark students of different languages and cultures. Many OS students believe they have been pre-sold an Australian degree yet don’t/can’t engage with Euro-focused, English-language classes. There’s a tussle between Western academic standards, economic survival and long-term Asia-Pacific relationships • After three applauded issues, the faculty appears to have dropped financial support for Polis, the journal of urbanism founded by Dale Jones-Evans and Linda Gregoriou with Professor Sandy Cuthbert.
On its way to AACA-RAIA accreditation, this Beaux Arts-inspired private college in Melbourne honours its first set of graduates this year.
At most universities, architecture schools are part of large faculties led by engineers. At RMIT the reverse applies, with degrees in social science and social work joining the newly renamed Faculty of the Constructed Environment, led by an architect, Professor Leon van Schaik • Last year’s stink about the direction of Transition-then-editor Peter Brew declared war on “the academy” while his paymasters called for RMIT’s work to be fostered in editions more regularly published-may have settled down. The latest issue, edited by van Schaik with graphics by Mark van den Enden, has important essays and looks good. The next four will be edited by Harriet Edquist,Catherine Murphy, Peter King and Jennifer Hocking • The landscape department has been revitalised with Peter Connolly as head and lecturers Kirsten Bauer, Julian Raxworthy, Sye Anne Ware (ex Berkeley) and Simone Slee. A new issue of its vigorous magazine, Kerb, is out • Dimity Read, Professor of Urban Design, has written a federal government report on urban design, to be distributed to local councils • Leonie Sandercock is Professor of Human Settlements.
Students in all faculties have voted Gold Coast architect Phillip Follent QUT’s lecturer of the year • Senior lecturer Jim Hutchinson took early retirement last year • Aspro Gordon Holden, Dean of Architecture, Interior Design and Industrial Design, has nearly completed a doctorate via the University of Newcastle.
The School of Architecture has moved to the Raffen Maron-designed City West campus on North Terrace • Christine Landorfhas replaced Aspro Don Langmead as Head of School; he has become Director of Research. Landorf says her funding squeeze priorities are to lose some staff and increase research and consultancy revenue but she declined to reveal details • Ex-Perth lecturer Sean Pickersgill is now coordinating the undergraduate course.
Despite vigorous objections from the RAIA and practitioners in Hobart, the university has decided to consolidate all architecture and urban design courses in Launceston, leaving Hobart without an academic presence.
After retiring from UTS, Professor Neville Quarry has become USydney’s Dean of Architecture on a contract listed for six months. Replacing Professor Warren Julian, he has to try to build up a discontented and staff-diminished Department of Architecture, help improve its relationship with the much-larger Department of Architectural and Design Science, promote the faculty to a profession not currently impressed (despite recent prizes for students Michelle Cramer, Winston Chhoeu, Sam Guo and Justine Butler), and help with integration into a new college (probably science and technology) • Advertisements have appeared for a permanent dean • Meanwhile, the faculty has a salary surplus left by departing professors. Head of Architecture Jim Conner has retired (replaced by Anna Rubbo); Peter Webber is on a light fractional appointment, Lawrence Nield returns to practice,Peter Droege is taking more outside work (including a consultancy to the Department of Urban Affairs and Planning), Aspro Jennifer Taylor (again denied a personal chair) is on leave overseas, Aspro Adrian Snodgrass is not teaching, and senior lecturer Keith Billings died suddenly at New Year • Solar architecture expert Alan Ogg joins Sydney from UNSW.
UTS has advertised for a professor of architecture to replace ‘retired’ Neville Quarry • Ken Pearson-Smith is keeping Stephen Harfield‘s seat warm as director of architecture programs, while Harfield fills in as an associate dean for on-leave Professor Dennis Lennard • Last year’s RAIA-AACA accreditation panel has approved the new B.Arch course (with a full-time first year allowing conclusion in five years instead of six)-but decided to ignore for now a controversial proposal to also offer students a masters degree potentially awardable alongside the B.Archs of diligent students.
Simon Anderson is back on board as Head of the School of Architecture and Fine Arts, replacing Professor Geoffrey London in another of their responsibility swops. London is planning to take one year’s leave after this semester to finish his book on Peter andAlison Smithson • The federal funding cut is being managed over two years via “slight” staff reductions, increased staff/student ratios and diminished contact hours, plus charges to students for extras.
Federal funding cuts are delaying introduction of an architecture course to be jointly run by Hawkesbury’s Building and Construction and Nepean’s Performance Art and Design.