As Pro-Vice Chancellor and Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, Prof Dell has changed the profile of engineering education and research at the University of Western Australia, dramatically changing the education model and focussing the research to be more industry focussed and collaborative between disciplines.
Prof Dell joined the Faculty in 1994, after working for 10 years in industry developing technologies for optoelectronics at Telecom Research Laboratories in Australia and space radiation effects at Matra Marconi Space Systems (now EADS) in France. He was appointed Dean of the Faculty in 2010 and was then appointed Pro-Vice Chancellor and Executive Dean of the Faculty in 2017.
Prof Dell has more than 300 refereed publications. John’s work has resulted in the awarding of a number of US and Australian defence contracts. He is also a co-inventor of a number of patented device structures and fabrication technologies. He is joint winner of the inaugural DSTO/Australia Museum Eureka Prize for Outstanding Science in Support of Defence or National Security. This technology is now being developed for real-time analysis of soil properties for agriculture, as well as applications in food science, defence and medicine.
John has a strong commitment to research and teaching and believes strongly that the nexus between the two is essential, particularly in developing new ways to inspire and educate future engineers. He is particularly interested in developing leadership in students and graduates, and an understanding that solutions are not only technical but have social, economic and cultural dimensions that need to be taken into account.