Position type:

Full time

16 Jun 2020
15 Jul 2020

Full details:

Reference number: AKU-6801

The AKU Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) aims to develop leaders through a transformative education that is endlessly challenging, stimulating and mind-opening – one that prepares graduates for innovative thought and consequential action.

The University's plan for FAS takes full advantage of the extraordinary opportunity to design a new undergraduate education from the ground up. It draws on the rich tradition of arts and sciences education while adapting it to a new context and infusing it with AKU's distinctive values.

In developing the FAS, the attributes and skills needed for leadership in a complex and fast-evolving world have been kept in mind. The hallmarks of our graduates will include what we refer to as the four C’s and the three E’s: critical thinking, clear communication, creativity, commitment to service, entrepreneurial outlook, engagement with pluralism and ethical action.



Reporting to the Provost, the Dean is the Chief Academic and Chief Executive Officer of the FAS, a member of the University’s senior leadership team, and the primary ambassador for the Faculty in the community. The Dean plays a central role in setting strategy and overall direction for arts and sciences education in the country; advises the Provost; works collaboratively with and supports other leaders to achieve the University goals; uses influence to align the Faculty with University priorities; and, models institutional values and competencies. As the Chief Academic Officer, the Dean is responsible for education and scholarship, as well as ensuring the quality and integrity of the Faculty in research, teaching, outreach and community engagement. As the Chief Executive Officer, the Dean is the highest-ranking official in the Faculty, with wide responsibility over its functioning and general supervision over the Faculty’s direction and work. The Dean is accountable for the creation and implementation of the Faculty’s strategic plans, including comprehensive budget and financial management to ensure outcomes are achieved. The Dean is the primary spokesperson and ambassador for the Faculty and promotes the Faculty through visibility at local, regional, national, and international events. In collaboration with senior colleagues, he/she oversees fundraising, communication, alumni engagement activities, and collaborates and consults with both internal and external stakeholders. The Dean will ensure that the various dimensions of the Faculty:

  • Develop in accordance with the vision and guidance of the AKU Chancellor and Board of Trustees, embodied in the mission and founding principles established for the Faculty
  • Reflect an institutional culture defined by innovation, sensitivity, flexibility, creativity, academic excellence, professionalism, ethics, social responsibility, synergy, confidence and energy
  • Operate efficiently within specified time frames and budgets – with rigorous attention to ensuring long-term financial sustainability
  • Contribute to the wider reputation, reach and priorities of the Aga Khan University and the Aga Khan Development Network to which it belongs.
  • The Dean works in close coordination with other University leaders to exchange knowledge and learn from other programmes, while retaining the unique aspects of FAS in line with AKU’s commitment to operating as a single integrated University.



The ideal candidate will bring outstanding academic qualifications, a record of scholarly achievement in a field related to the Arts or the Sciences, significant administrative and leadership experience, as well as a passion for advancing education, research, and scholarship. Exposure to or experience in countries with developing economies is preferred. Academic Criteria:

  • A PhD or equivalent in a field of either Arts or Sciences is preferred
  • Eligible for appointment at the rank of professor on selection or soon thereafter.

Leadership and Vision:

  • Demonstrated success as a leader in higher education, possessing the ability to inspire and mobilise others to achieve exemplary performance and outcomes in research, education, and scholarship
  • Demonstrated ability to facilitate and manage change within a large and diverse organisation
  • Administrative experience in higher education as a dean, associate dean, director, or other similar leadership position
  • Deep understanding of and commitment to diversity and inclusivity
  • Involvement in the facilitation of building, articulating and pursuing a vision for a higher educational unit through to successful implementation
  • Record of the promotion of teamwork, collaboration and partnership
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with students, faculty and staff
  • Ability to work within a complex environment by establishing priorities and maintaining a balance between short- and long-term goals
  • Ability to articulate a strong commitment to the development and innovation of all areas represented within the Faculty, including social sciences, humanities, basic and natural sciences.


  • Administrative experience in a complex, dynamic, academic or research environment
  • Experience building and leading a highly functioning team, with an appropriate balance of decisiveness, collegiality, and effective delegation
  • Experience in budgetary and financial management and human resources; including the ability to creatively and collaboratively identify and implement strategies for improved efficiency
  • Experience mentoring new faculty for success through the tenure and promotion process
  • Demonstrated commitment to a collaborative and collegial management style
  • Ability to create an environment in which faculty, staff and students can thrive
  • Commitment to the development of new and enhanced sources of funding
  • Commitment to openness, transparency and accountability
  • Strong communication skills, both written and oral
  • Experience communicating and implementing strategies for recruiting exceptional faculty, staff and students.

Research, Scholarship and Service:

  • Evidence of a commitment to inter-disciplinarity and internationalisation
  • Has established a clearly articulated and well-established programme of funded research and publications
  • Commitment to a student-focused culture promoting excellence in terms of student learning, graduate student training, and the overall student experience
  • Willingness to promote and embrace diverse teaching and research methodologies.

External Relations:

  • Demonstrated ability to promote inter-professional and inter-sectoral relationships
  • Ability to advocate for the role of FAS in meeting the needs and demand for high quality arts and sciences education and research in Pakistan and the wider region
  • Ability to build positive relationships with external organisations and to effectively represent the interests of the Faculty regionally and internationally
  • Commitment to engage in fund-raising activities for further expansion of both the Faculty’s and the University’s resource base.

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