Welcoming new Executive Director, Inga Davis

Academy President Emeritus Professor Lesley Head FASSA FAHA has announced the appointment of Inga Davis as the Academy’s next Executive Director.

After nearly 20 years working in and consulting to the higher education sector, Inga Davis will take up the role of Executive Director on 1 February.

“Inga brings enthusiasm, drive and strategic experience to our ambitious program for 2023 and beyond,” says Professor Head.

Inga has held senior appointments at the University of Adelaide (Chief Executive, External Relations) and the University of Canberra (Director, Advancement, Marketing and Communications and previously, Director of the Vice-Chancellor’s Office).

Most recently she has held the position of Principal at Research Strategies Australia, where she has worked with and for a range of stakeholders in the higher education, defence and health sectors.

Inga says she is excited to take on the opportunity to lead the Academy, working with Council and Fellows to champion the unique role of the humanities in Australia.

“It is a tremendous privilege to be appointed to the role, following the outstanding leadership of Dr Tina Parolin, who has significantly developed the profile of the Academy over the last 14 years,” shares Inga.

“I expect to pick up where Tina has left off, engaging with the higher education reforms that are currently before us, as well as the national science and research priorities. We will also continue to prioritise the Academy’s commitment to Indigenous recognition and reconciliation.”

In her role at the University of Adelaide, Inga led the development of the University’s multi-disciplinary approach to industry engagement, establishment of the cultural engagement portfolio, as well as government and community engagement portfolios, a 3,500-person volunteer program, strategic communications, and the alumni engagement and philanthropy programs.

At the University of Canberra, she was responsible for the University’s brand, marketing and student recruitment portfolios, leadership of the University’s 40th anniversary program, establishment of the UC Foundation, the College of Adjuncts, major sporting partnerships, media and communications.

“Inga’s external engagement skills are very timely at this point in the Academy’s history, as we look to preserve and advance Australia’s humanities knowledge for years to come,” says Professor Head.

In recognising this critical role, Inga sees the Academy as:

“uniquely placed to support the Government’s aspirations to build a smarter, stronger and fairer Australia, by ensuring cultural, creative and ethical perspectives are key considerations, alongside other drivers of productivity.”

In addition to her wide-ranging engagement and leadership experience, Inga has served as a member of the University of Canberra Council and was a Director of the University of Canberra Union.

She is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and holds a Bachelor of Communications (Public Relations and Information Management) and a Graduate Certificate in Business Administration from the University of Canberra.

Inga joins the Academy at a critical point in time as we prepare to launch our Australia’s China Knowledge Capability report and start engaging with Australian Governments, industries and communities around the project’s findings.

“In the coming months, I’m also looking forward to working with our experts on China in leading the national conversation on Australia’s knowledge and capability on Chinese language and scholarship,” says Inga.

“Our forthcoming report will be focused on providing advice to Government, universities, industry and community on the role of the higher education sector in building Australia’s sovereign knowledge and capability.”

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Acknowledgement of Country

The Australian Academy of the Humanities recognises Australia’s First Nations Peoples as the traditional owners and custodians of this land, and their continuous connection to country, community and culture.