The University of Tasmania is governed by the University Council, chaired by the Chancellor, and assisted by its committees, including Academic Senate.

The University of Tasmania is a statutory corporation, continued under the University of Tasmania Act 1992. The University is governed by the University Council, which is chaired by the Chancellor and advised by Academic Senate and a number of other committees.

A Governance Instruments Framework provides guidance and accountability in decision-making under the Act and includes the University’s ordinances, by-laws, policies and procedures.


The University Council is the governing body of the University of Tasmania. It is established by the University of Tasmania Act 1992.

University Council is chaired by current Chancellor, Ms Alison Watkins AM, who is elected by Council members.

In addition to chairing Council, the role of the Chancellor is to confer degrees and to work with the Vice-Chancellor (the chief academic and executive officer of the University) to ensure that major decisions of the University are sound. This means that the Vice-Chancellor will consult with the Chancellor and Council and seek guidance or input as is appropriate and keep the Chancellor informed of developments in the University that may have strategic significance.

Alison Watkins

Alison grew up on a farm in regional Tasmania. She attended Sorell Primary School and St Michael’s Collegiate in Hobart and studied at the University of Tasmania.

She is an experienced CEO and member of executive boards. She is a member of the Reserve Bank of Australia Board, a director of CSL Limited and a non-executive director of Wesfarmers Limited. She is also a director of the Business Council of Australia and the Centre for Independent Studies.

Alison’s previous roles include Group Managing Director of Coca-Cola Amatil, Chief Executive Officer of GrainCorp Limited and Berri Limited, and Managing Director of Regional Banking at ANZ. Alison spent 10 years at McKinsey & Company from 1989-1999 and became a partner of the firm in 1996 before moving to ANZ as Group General Manager Strategy. Alison has been a non-executive director of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited, Woolworths Limited and Just Group Limited.

University Council

The University Council is required to act in all matters of the University in the way it considers will best advance the interests of the University.

It has the power to do all things necessary to fulfil its role as the University's governing authority.

It is advised by its committees, its working parties, and (in relation to academic matters) the Academic Senate.

Find out more about the constitution, functions and powers of the University Council

Overview of Council vacancies

In accordance with s8(5) of the Act, before making an appointment to the Council, the Minister and the Council must –

  • a. give public notification of the vacancy; and
  • b. consult with each other about any intended appointment; and
  • c. have regard to the balance of skills and experience, regional representation and an appropriate gender balance.

Call for nominations - Members appointed by Council

In accordance with s.8 (1) (j) of the Act, Council is comprised of up to 6 persons appointed by the Council, each of whom must not be a member of the academic staff or professional staff or a student and of whom at least one must be a graduate of the University. Two (2) vacancies currently exist under this section.

This application process is now closed.

Academic Senate

The University of Tasmania Act 1992 establishes an Academic Senate with the legislated function to advise University Council on all academic matters relating to the University.

University Council has delegated additional selected functions and powers to Academic Senate, alongside advising University Council on maintaining the University’s academic standing, fostering collegiality, and supporting the engagement of academic colleagues.

Academic Senate meets six times per year.

The Academic Senate's statutory authority in academic matters within the University has been elaborated in the Academic Senate Ordinance (PDF 191.3 KB). The Ordinance prescribes that the role of Academic Senate is to:

  • Approve awards and determine the qualifications required of a candidate before they may be admitted to an award. The list of Courses Approved by Academic Senate is updated after each meeting of Academic Senate.
  • Provide academic oversight of the quality of teaching, learning, research and research training
  • Monitor institutional benchmarks for academic quality and outcomes and monitor initiated actions to improve performance
  • Monitor and provide competent advice to the University Council and management on academic matters, including advice on academic outcomes, policies and practices, and the quality of teaching, learning, research and research training
  • Monitor and review academic policies and procedures and their effectiveness
  • Provide feedback on substantial changes to academic delegations and the effectiveness of the academic delegations structure.
  • Maintain oversight of academic and research integrity, including monitoring of potential risks
  • Critically evaluate the quality and effectiveness of educational innovations
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of institutional monitoring, review and improvement of academic activities
  • Ensure students have opportunities to participate in academic governance.

Academic Senate committees assist and advise Academic Senate in ensuring the maintenance of the highest standards and quality in teaching, scholarship and research in the University of Tasmania. Academic Senate has established the following committees:

  • Standing Academic Committee
  • Monitoring and Assurance Committee
  • University Learning and Teaching Committee
  • Student Experience Committee
  • University Research Committee.
  • University Admissions Committee
  • University Course and Unit Proposals Committee
  • Nominations Committee.

Membership of Academic Senate comprises the Vice-Chancellor, Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Pro Vice-Chancellors, Dean of Graduate Research, Executive Deans, Heads of Schools and academic areas, student representatives from the Tasmanian University Student Association (TUSA), chairs of Academic Senate committees, elected and appointed academic staff, and specialist professional staff. The membership composition enables Senate to robustly monitor, discuss and debate current and future academic matters on behalf of the University.

The Academic Senate elects its own Chair and Deputy Chair.  The current Chair is Professor Natalie Brown, and the Deputy Chair is Associate Professor Kristyn Harman. In addition to the Deputy Chair, there may be an Associate Chair selected by invitation of the Chair. The current Associate Chair is Dr Clayton Hawkins.

PositionName Term expiry
Vice-Chancellor Prof Rufus Black  
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Prof Anthony Koutoulis  
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) Prof Mitch Parsell  
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Prof Ian Anderson  
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Student Services and Operations)Mr Craig Barling 
Dean of Graduate Research Prof Lisa Fletcher (Acting) 
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Aboriginal Leadership) Prof Greg Lehman  
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Equity and Student Success) Prof Martin Grimmer (Acting)  
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Academic Excellence) Prof Martin Grimmer  
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Launceston) Prof Dom Geraghty  
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Cradle Coast) Prof Sonya Stanford  
Pro Vice-Chancellor (South) Vacant  
Director, Curriculum Vacant 
Executive Director, Recruitment Mr Rob Wilson  
University Librarian Ms Janette Burke  
President, TUSA Mr Liam McLaren  
Southern Campus President, TUSA Mr Jack Oates Pryor 
Postgraduate Representative, TUSA Ms Shan-Yu Yu 
Undergraduate Representative, TUSA Ms Kt Lertsinpakdee 
Members of the Monitoring and Assurance Committee  
  Dr Anne Heath (UC) 31 December 2023
  Dr Mark Harrison (CALE) 31 December 2023
  Dr Clayton Hawkins (UC) 31 December 2024
  Dr Rachel Baird (CALE) 31 December 2024
  Assoc Prof Stas Shabala (CoSE) 31 December 2024
Senate Committee Chairs  
Student Experience Committee Dr Ana Lobo 31 December 2024
University Research Committee Dr Michael Guerzoni 31 December 2024
University Learning and Teaching Committee Prof Tina Acuna 31 December 2024
Arts, Law and EducationProf Kate Darian-Smith
Business and EconomicsProf Stuart Crispin
Health and MedicineProf Denise Fassett
Sciences and EngineeringMr Terry Bailey
Architecture and DesignProf Julian Worrall
Australian Maritime CollegeMr Malcolm Wise
Creative Arts and MediaProf Meg Keating
EducationProf Victoria Carrington
EngineeringProf Tim Finnigan
Geography, Planning, and Spatial SciencesProf Arko Lucieer
Health SciencesProf Nuala Byrne
HumanitiesAssoc Prof Emmett Stinson 
Information and Communication TechnologyMr Tyson Wienker (Acting)
Institute for Marine and Antarctic StudiesProf Catriona MacLeod (Interim)
International SchoolProf Melanie Bryant
LawProf Gino dal Pont (Acting)
MedicineAssoc Prof Tim Strong
Menzies Institute for Medical ResearchProf Tracey Dickson
Natural SciencesProf Simon Ellingsen
NursingProf Christine Stirling
Pharmacy and PharmacologyProf Glenn Jacobson
Psychological SciencesProf Lisa Foa
Social SciencesProf Nicholas Farrelly
Tasmanian Institute of AgricultureProf Michael Rose
Tasmanian School of Business and EconomicsAssoc Prof Belinda Williams
University CollegeAssoc Prof Andrea Carr
Wicking Dementia Research and Education CentreProf James Vickers
PositionNameTerm expiry
Chair Prof Natalie Brown 31 December 2024
Deputy Chair Assoc Prof Kristyn Harman 31 December 2024
Associate Chair Dr Clayton Hawkins 31 December 2024
Research Fellow Dr Vipul Gupta (CoSE) 31 December 2023
Members of academic staff Dr Andrea Adam (Central) 31 December 2023
  Dr Bronwyn Eager (CoBE) 31 December 2024
  Dr Toby Newstead (CoBE) 31 December 2024
  Dr Seedwell Sithole (CoBE) 31 December 2023
  Dr Louise Grimmer (CoBE) 31 December 2023
  Assoc Prof Jane Alty (CoHM) 31 December 2024
  Casual Vacancy (CoHM) 31 December 2024
  Dr Jamie Chapman (CoHM 31 December 2023
  Dr Denis Visentin (CoHM) 31 December 2023
  Dr Victoria Nagy (CALE) 31 December 2024
  Assoc Prof Anne-Marie Forbes (CALE) 31 December 2024
  Assoc Prof Kristyn Harman (CALE) 31 December 2023
  Dr Graham Wood (CALE) 31 December 2023
  Dr Ana Lobo (UC) 31 December 2024
  Mr Rene Kling (UC) 31 December 2023
  Dr Andrew Fischer (CoSE) 31 December 2024
  Assoc Prof Evan Franklin (CoSE) 31 December 2024
  Assoc Prof Kristy de Salas (CoSE) 31 December 2023
  Dr David Nichols (CoSE) 31 December 2023
NameTerm expiry
Dr Barbara de Graaff (CoHM)December 31, 2024
Assoc Prof Malgorzata (CoHM)December 31, 2024
Mr Mark Shelton (UC)December 31, 2024
Dr Oscar Vorobjovas-Pinta (CALE)December 31, 2024
Vice Chancellor’s Envoy (Europe)
Director, Academic Quality and Standards
Associate Deans Learning and Teaching Performance
Associate Deans Research Performance
Academic Senate Secretary

Ms Sarah Keating

Sarah is Academic Senate Secretary and has been with the University of Tasmania since 2014. Sarah is an alumna, having graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 2001 and a Master of Social Work in 2013.

Sarah brings her previous experience in high-level administration, project management, policy, and compliance to her current role, along with her ability to provide high-quality strategic advice and leadership and her excellent relationship management skills.

Sarah’s expertise in university Governance ensures Academic Senate is able to fulfill its legislated obligations to govern and manage all aspects of the University's academic activities.

Academic Senate meet six times per year, including a Planning Day in December. After each meeting of Academic Senate, a report is submitted to University Council detailing the business of the meeting. The Report to University Council, along with the decisions made by Academic Senate at each of its meetings are available below.

For further information, contact the Academic Senate Secretary at University staff may access more information at the Academic Senate (staff intranet).

Council Committees

Council Committees report to the University Council. Council normally makes appointments to its committees at either its last ordinary meeting for the year prior or the first ordinary Council meeting, and in every alternate year after that.

The membership of the Council committees is as at 1 January 2023.

The Chancellor is an ex-officio member of every board, college and committee of the University, but is listed here only for those committees normally attended.

Council Committees follow, each listed with their composition and terms of reference:

  • Chancellor
    Ms Alison Watkins AM

    Term expires:
    31 December 2025
  • Chair
    Ms Alicia Leis
    Term expires:
    31 December 2024

Appointed by council

  • Mr Kane Ingham
    Term expires:
    31 December 2024
  • Mr Leigh Franklin
    Term expires:
    28 February 2025
  • Professor Natalie Brown
    Term expires:
    28 February 2025
  • Assoc Prof Ashley Townsend
    Term expires:
    28 February 2025
  • Ms Sheree Vertigan AM
    Term expires:
    28 February 2025


  • Mr Damien Maurice


  • Vice-Chancellor
    Professor Rufus Black
  • Chief Operating Officer
    Mr Craig Barling (Acting)
  • General Counsel & Executive Director, Legal
    Ms Jane Beaumont
  • Director. Risk
    Ms Jillian Ribbons
  • To oversee the risk management framework and ensure that it effectively facilitates the identification, assessment and mitigation of key higher-level risks across the University (including all entities and activities).
  • To ensure that the University is supported with a contemporary internal audit program that provides appropriate depth and breadth of coverage, including appropriate oversight of long-term appointments of outsourced audit service providers.
  • To monitor the activities and performance of the internal and external audit functions.
  • To review and endorse the annual financial statements.
  • To review internal and external audit reports to ensure that recommendations and agreed actions are promptly enacted.
  • To facilitate the conduct of special investigations initiated by the committee or requested by Council as required.
  • To monitor the establishment of, and on-going compliance with, an appropriate framework of internal control.
  • To oversee the effectiveness of the University's compliance framework.
  • To monitor the establishment of, and ongoing compliance with, an appropriate cyber security program.

For all University Council and Committee meeting dates, please refer to the Planning Calendar.

For Key University Dates (Academic and Semester dates) please refer to Key Dates.

University Council and Committee meeting dates

For Key University Dates (Academic and Semester dates) please refer to Key Dates.

Governance Instruments Framework

Our governance instruments framework provides guidance and accountability in decision making under the University of Tasmania Act 1992, our governing Act. The University’s governance instruments are the University By-laws, our ordinances and policies supported by procedures which are automated through systems wherever possible. All of our instruments are consistent with legislation and other compliance and regulatory requirements.

Find out more about the governance instruments framework

Annual reports

Annual Reports from 1997 onwards are available online.

View annual reports

University grievance procedures

Contacts and secretariat

  • Council Secretariat
    Postal Address
    University of Tasmania
    Private Bag 51
    Sandy Bay TAS 7001