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Curtin academic to Chair new UNESCO position

Media release

A Curtin University professor has been appointed the inaugural United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Chair for Data Science in Higher Education Teaching and Learning.

UNESCO’s appointment of Professor David Gibson, Director of Learning Futures, Curtin Learning and Teaching, was formally announced at the edX Global Forum in Paris this week.

Curtin Vice-Chancellor Professor Deborah Terry congratulated Professor Gibson on his appointment, adding that it reinforced the University’s profile and position on the global stage.

“The prestigious appointment further supports Curtin’s research-intensive culture and capacity to share scientific advances with the world,” Professor Terry said.

“It also links in with our data science focus and capabilities – to solve real world problems in education to benefit future students.”

Professor Gibson said he was honoured to accept the UNESCO position.

“I look forward to the challenge of improving the access and effectiveness of education for lifelong learning, globally,” Professor Gibson said.

“With Curtin’s support, we hope to unearth new knowledge and ideas in data science that help to transform higher education learning and teaching.”

Curtin is the only Western Australian University to partner with edX, the non-profit online learning destination founded by Harvard and MIT. edX was instrumental in laying the foundations for the position and will provide ongoing support.

The University now has two staff members who hold UNESCO appointments, with Professor Erik Champion, from the School of Media, Culture and the Arts, UNESCO’s Professorial Chair in Cultural Heritage and Visualisation.

For more information on UNESCO, visit: http://en.unesco.org/.