University of Sydney Handbooks - 2012 Archive

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Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment

Having marked its centenary in 2010, the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment is proud to celebrate its history while looking to the future.

Today’s faculty is a community of distinguished international scholars. Among our staff you will find those who have won medals, fellowships and prizes awards from the most prestigious national and international granting bodies, associations and academies. With completion in 2012 of major research facilities at Camden and Narrabri, and a refreshed vision for our properties and research stations on the Liverpool Plains, the Monaro and in the Snowy Mountains, students can look forward to practical engagement in modern land management. Practical teaching is one of our strengths and we value highly our reputation for producing highly skilled graduates equipped with the latest knowledge in key areas. Our focus is on providing the knowledge that will underpin solutions to the most significant and challenging issues of our time and we welcome students who share our passion.

Finding solutions is an exciting career path, and opportunities for skilled graduates in "new science" areas are growing exponentially. Previously unheard-of fields such as carbon and water trading, food futures and sustainability complement recent developments in science and technology. We recently prepared a vision statement that we call GR². This vision is to build the knowledge needed to tackle the massive challenge of feeding the world using less water, less energy, and probably less land. The title – GR² – stands for a "green resolution" – our resolution to tackle a problem that is now many fold more difficult than it was 40 years ago.

Our degrees are rich educational experiences that bring together many disciplines. The carefully constructed curriculum prepares graduates for a range of careers. We pride ourselves on teaching excellence and students are able to learn from internationally renowned research leaders. Units offered in the third and fourth year allow students to tailor their focus and develop cutting edge knowledge of their chosen fields of study.

While our emphasis on interdisciplinarity and ecosystem sciences is widely recognised as being the key to solving current and future major global and national issues, it also recognises the past. Agriculture has always been interdisciplinary; it is just that the challenges of today differ from those of yesterday and one of the very best aspects of humankind is its ability to adapt and use new ways of thinking and new technologies to survive and prosper. On behalf of the faculty, I warmly invite you to join us and begin your journey to new ways of thinking and engaging with all the faculty has to offer.

Professor Mark Adams