With a new structured pathway and elevations across the company announced recently at Woods Bagot, there have also been significant changes made to its education sector.
Under the leadership of Sarah Ball (pictured below) who has been working hard to solidify the leadership and team growth in the sector, the new education restructure will see stronger ownership and expected buoyant growth across its portfolio, including the Australian, New Zealand and ASEAN region.
Ball has been appointed Global Leader of Education and will oversee the sector while still being extensively involved with clients, research and projects.
Ball said it was exciting to see the changes happening in the education sector, which have been driven by industry demand and individual growth within the company.
These elevations reflect our depth and strength in the Education Sectors and reflects Woods Bagot’s commitment to excellence. We are a passionate team who believe that that every design decision must have positive impact on the student campus experience.
Alan Duffy (pictured above) will move into the role of Australian Regional Leader based in Sydney. Having been actively involved in the education sector over many years as a senior design leader which lead to the implementation of a continuum of successful projects including universities in Australasia and China, Duffy said the appointment provided many exciting challenges and opportunities.
“My intention is to build greater awareness to the critical role that design has in creating learning environments and its ability to positively influence the education experience,” he said. “Diversity and customisation of space continue to inform architecture with adaptive and transformable components becoming more prevalent in our design response. It is through this more creative approach Woods Bagot can continue to evolve our understanding of education paradigms through thoughtful and purposeful architecture and interior design that inspires and stimulates positive learning outcomes."
With the education sector experiencing a shift globally driven by technology and rapidly changing lifestyles, creative thinking, problem solving and entrepreneurial abilities will drive student attributes and impact the way industry, education and lifestyle operates.
“Universities are looking for ways to engage and partner with private enterprise as part of the education process. Interconnectivity is a huge part of the equation as well as social cohesion. So we need to be adaptable to these trends,” Duffy said.
Competition between universities and education funding are two of the major issues confronting the education sector in Australia right now, with Innovation and Science being targeted as the main levers to stimulate economic growth, according to Duffy.
“We are also noticing an increasing trend to attract international students, which requires a need for more dedicated student accommodation. There’s a lot of emphasis on innovation and entrepreneurial talent, so universities need to evaluate their asset management and space utilisation much more to facilitate collaborative and creative learning environments that will support the next generation of knowledge sharing,” he said.
Duffy will work closely with the Education leaders in each of the Australian Studios: Sarah Howden (Adelaide), Sarah McMahon (Brisbane), Emma-Louise Hannigan, Albert Fraval (Melbourne), William Schofield (Perth) and Chris Sava (Sydney).
Globally, Jo Dane and Kenn Fisher will continue to lead Education Futures, the consulting arm of the Woods Bagot Education Sector which is focused on leading academics and designers on the future of learning environments.