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Historian Professor Jo Fox appointed as the next dean of University of London’s School of Advanced Study


Professor Jo Fox, director of the Institute of Historical Research (IHR) and acting Dean of the School of Advanced Study (SAS), has been appointed the new Dean and Chief Executive of SAS and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Public Engagement with the University of London. She will take up her new role on 1 December and succeeds Professor Rick Rylance, who retired in September after leading the School for five years.  

Professor Jo Fox

Professor Fox took over the directorship of IHR in January 2018. Prior to that she was head of department and professor of modern British and European History at Durham University where she began her academic career in 1999.

“The Humanities and Social Sciences play a crucial, pivotal role in our understanding of what it means to be human – our history and our cultures,’ said Professor Fox, who has been acting Dean since January.

“The School of Advanced Study is in a prime position to lead and innovate in these critical fields of study, and it’s a great honour to be appointed to work with the amazing talent to be found here. The times we are in present unique challenges and we are ready to tackle them.”

Commenting on the appointment, Professor Wendy Thomson Vice-Chancellor of the University of London said: “On behalf of the appointment panel, I am delighted to announce Jo’s appointment as PVC Research and Public Engagement, and Dean of the School of Advanced Study. Working as interim Dean, Vice-Dean and Director of the IHR Jo has provided outstanding leadership to the School in very challenging times. She demonstrates an incredible passion for the Humanities in society and a belief in their critical role in understanding our past, our present and our future.”

Professor Fox is a specialist in the history of propaganda and psychological warfare in 20th-century Europe. She has published research on the propaganda in Britain and Germany during the Second World War, in particular exploring the connections between propaganda and popular opinion.

Professor Fox holds BA and PhD degrees in History from the University of Kent.