Brunel University carried out an extensive search for its new Vice-Chancellor. Jeffrey Ellwood, Chair of Council at Brunel University, who led the selection committee, comments: "We are extremely fortunate to have Chris as our new Vice-Chancellor. He has an outstanding personal research record and has already made a substantial contribution to the strategic goals of the University. We are confident that he will continue to grow the vibrant research culture at the University and will lead Brunel forward with confidence at an exciting time in its history."
Prof. Jenks joined Brunel in August 2004 to spearhead the university's research strategy, following a long and successful tenure at Goldsmiths College, University of London. Prof. Jenks was named Professor of Sociology at Goldsmiths in 1996. In 1997 he was appointed Pro-Warden for Research and was promoted again in 1998 to Senior Pro-Warden. In 2001 Prof. Jenks was elected Academician of the Academy of the Learned Societies for the Social Sciences and in 2002 appointed a Visiting Research Professor at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
At Goldsmiths, Prof. Jenks led a dramatic improvement in the Schools' research rating, with 90% of academic staff being entered for the RAE, 50% being returned at grades 5 and 5* and 80% overall being returned at grade 4 and above in 2001. Prof. Jenks' department, which had started as a grade 2, achieved a grade 6*.
Prof. Chris Jenks comments: “'This is a very exciting time to be appointed Vice-Chancellor and I am delighted to be playing a central role in the University's rapid and positive development. When I joined Brunel 18 months ago I faced a new disciplinary profile and an unfamiliar research culture. However, it quickly became apparent that there is considerable quality within our academic community and a clear collective desire to become a research-led university. This is a strong base for the future, particularly when combined with such a thriving, diverse community of staff and students. I am looking forward to our future progress together.“