Associate Dean for Academic Initiatives – University of Michigan

The Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan seeks an associate dean for academic initiatives (ADAI): a dynamic, visionary, and effective faculty member to lead continuous improvement and innovation in our academic work.

Taubman College promotes the public good by engaging a diverse constituency in purpose-driven learning and research addressing the built environment. Consistently named among the best architecture and planning schools in the country, the college prepares graduates to lead the professions, organizations, and institutions that shape our world at every scale. Investments in digital and material making, new master’s degrees, and enhanced facilities have made the college a leading site of advanced work, particularly in robotics, fabrication, and material systems. Capacity-building in community engagement, pipeline programs, and justice initiatives has made Taubman a leader in promoting equity. Faculty fellowships and research grants have cultivated a robust experimental design culture. Through interdisciplinary work with field-leading units at one of the world’s greatest public research universities, Taubman faculty and students are prototyping a better future.

The ADAI assures collaboration across sectors of the college and the university, as well as with community partners and other external constituents to pursue the college’s educational mission and vision. The ADAI works with program chairs and other administrative and faculty leaders to establish high academic standards and student achievement. They lead the college in pursuing innovative methods of teaching and learning that promote excellence, diversity, equity, and inclusion. They lead the college in strategizing, initiating, and managing partnerships both within and beyond the university-setting, including global engagements and partnerships. They strategize and promote alignment with university-wide initiatives such as presidential and provostial focus areas.

Principal Accountabilities

 The ADAI is accountable to the Taubman College dean for leadership to achieve the following:

  • Building on our strategic plan, ensure that teaching and learning in college degree programs and non-degree offerings promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in content, methods, and climate.
  • Work with the program chairs and directors, faculty, and curriculum committees to ensure that the college pilots and implements academic innovations that enhance excellence while lowering barriers to entry for traditionally underrepresented constituents.
  • Coordinate academic affairs leadership by program chairs and directors to ensure that teaching and learning in college degree programs and non-degree offerings meet or exceed the standards established at university, school/college, and program levels.
  • Ensure that the college promotes critical engagement with questions of equity in professional practice across planning and the architecture, engineering, and construction sector.
  • Ensure that the college contributes to and benefits from university-wide initiatives such as presidential and provostial focus areas, particularly in areas of college emphasis such as digital and material making, sustainable urban strategies, and health design.
  • Ensure that the college continues to lead the field in pipeline-building programs and partnerships.

 Principal Responsibilities

  • Work with the dean to implement the vision of the college via leadership in academic affairs, academic innovation, partnerships, non-degree offerings, and public programs.
  • Coordinate academic affairs compliance and initiatives across college degree programs and non-degree offerings.
  • With chairs and program directors, lead academic innovation strategy and implementation across the college.
  • Take on the role of implementation lead for the college’s diversity, equity and inclusion strategy, coordinating with the DEI specialist and the college’s DEI Committee to ensure that we achieve our goals.
  • Supervise the director of the Michigan Architecture Prep program and other key faculty and staff in relevant areas.
  • Oversee and administer academic integrity policies and practices.
  • Lead the college in developing, implementing, and assessing a global engagement strategy.
  • Assure collaborations across sectors of the college and university, as well as with community partners and constituents, to pursue the college’s educational and research objectives.
  • Assist the dean in representing the college’s interests to internal and external constituencies including alumni, government officials, professional and industry partners, and foundations.
  • With academic leadership and development staff, pursue external funding for academic initiatives.
  • Chair the college DEI Committee and serve as an ex-officio member of the Executive Committee.


The ADAI will hold a concurrent tenured faculty appointment in architecture or urban planning at the rank of associate professor or higher. The ideal candidate will have a track record of leadership and innovation in curriculum, pedagogy, and research, as well as the capacity to represent the college effectively to a diverse range of constituents.


 Applications are due by January 20, 2018.  Review of applications begins on January 22, 2018 and will conclude when the position is filled.

Step one:

Applicants should visit and submit the following items: (1) a cover letter explaining your interest in the position; (2) a current curriculum vitae; and (3) the name, title, institution, phone number and email address for three references.

Step two:

Submit an application as an external (or if applicable, internal) candidate via Job ID 149177. You can select an option to apply without a resume or any other attachments. You do not need to complete the work history and education sections.

For questions, please contact the search committee c/o Ms. Ann Luke at

For further information about the programs, visit our web site:

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.