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'Visionary' Bartlett prof takes over Greenwich

Bartlett digital professor Neil Spiller has been appointed as the new head of the School of Architecture and Construction at the University of Greenwich

Cyberspace-guru Spiller leaves his position as professor of Architecture & Digital Theory, graduate director of design, and vice dean at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College, London to replace previous head Richard Hayward who retired earlier this year.

Spiller, who is also the director of the Advanced Virtual and Technological Architecture Research Group (AVATAR) at the Bartlett and has written numerous books including Visionary Architecture: Blueprints of Modern Imagination, will help oversee the £76 million Heneghan Peng-designed project to build a new school of architecture for the University.

Starting on September 1, Spiller will manage a team of 65 academic staff and nearly 3,000 students in the School.

Professor Spiller said: ‘It is a great time to be joining the University of Greenwich as the School of Architecture & Construction makes plans for its new building in central Greenwich.

‘The demands of a swiftly changing ecological, economic and political climate require that. We must equip our graduates, who may be practising for 50 years or more, to cope with a future where all eventualities are possible.”

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Greenwich, Baroness Blackstone, says: ‘Spiller will play an important role in the development of our plans for a new building for the School; taking advantage of its new location, close to the City and Docklands, which will provide many opportunities to enhance its academic profile and reputation.’

Previous story (07.06.10)

Greenwich Uni seeks new architecture school head

The University of Greenwich is hunting for a new head of architecture following Richard Hayward’s decision to retire

Appointed in 2002, Hayward recently oversaw the competition to design a new £60 million home and campus library for the school of architecture which was, won by Heneghan Peng (AJ 11/09/2009). Hayward will leave at the end of the current academic year.

The university has denied the funding crisis affecting universities nationwide played any part in Hayward decision to stand down.

Press officer for the University Caron Jones said: ‘We’re in a relatively stable financial situation compared to other schools.’

‘As well as our new building, we are consolidating and expanding our teaching staff by bringing in two new staff. Overall student numbers are rising,’ she said.

The incoming head of the School of Architecture and Construction is expected to have ‘flair and vision’, a strong track record in research and play an important role in the planning and execution of the school’s new campus.

The £80,000 job has been advertised internally and through the Times Higher Education - deadline 24 June.

Co-founder and executive co-editor of the Urban Design International journal, Hayward has worked as an architect and urban designer, combining teaching, practice and research throughout most of his career.

He was a partner at BHMS urban design practice during the 1980s and worked as a consultant on a number of projects domestically and in Europe, Latin America and Australia.

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