You are here:

  • news

Wednesday 11 November 2020

jo fox

Professor Jo Fox, director of the Institute of Historical Research (IHR) and acting dean of the School of Advanced Study (SAS), has been appointed the new dean and chief executive of SAS and pro-vice chancellor for research and public engagement with the University of London. She will take up her new role on 1 December and succeeds Professor Rick Rylance, who retired in September after leading the School for five years.  

Professor Fox took over the directorship of IHR in January 2018. Prior to that she was head of department and professor of modern British and European history at Durham University where she began her academic career in 1999.

“The humanities and social sciences play a crucial, pivotal role in our understanding of what it means to be human – our history and our cultures," said Professor Fox, who has been acting dean since January. 

“The School of Advanced Study is in a prime position to lead and innovate in these critical fields of study, and it’s a great honour to be appointed to work with the amazing talent to be found here. The times we are in present unique challenges and we are ready to tackle them.”

Commenting on the appointment, Professor Wendy Thomson vice-chancellor of the University of London said: “On behalf of the appointment panel, I am delighted to announce Jo’s appointment as PVC research and public engagement, and dean of the School of Advanced Study. Working as interim dean, vice-dean and director of the IHR Jo has provided outstanding leadership to the School in very challenging times. She demonstrates an incredible passion for the humanities in society and a belief in their critical role in understanding our past, our present and our future.”  

Professor Fox holds BA and PhD degrees in History from the University of Kent, and is a specialist in the history of propaganda and psychological warfare in 20th-century Europe. She has published research on the propaganda in Britain and Germany during the Second World War, in particular exploring the connections between propaganda and popular opinion. 


Notes to Editors

  1. For all enquiries, please contact Maureen McTaggart, Media and Public Relations Officer, School of Advanced Study, University of London: Images available on request.
  2. Professor Fox’s publications include Film Propaganda in Britain and Nazi Germany: World War II Cinema. She co-edited (with David Welch) Justifying War: Propaganda, Politics and the Modern Age, and (with Mark Connelly) Propaganda and Conflict. War, Media and Shaping the Twentieth Century.
  3. The School of Advanced Study (SAS), University of London, is the UK’s national centre for the promotion and support of research in the humanities. SAS and its member institutes offer unparalleled resources, facilities and academic opportunities across a wide range of subject areas for the benefit of the national and international scholarly community. Last year SAS welcomed 892 research fellows and associates, held 1,903 events highlighting the latest research in the humanities, received 25.9 million online visits to its research resources and platforms, and hosted 173,493 visits to its specialist libraries and collections. The School also leads Being Human, the UK’s only nationwide festival of the humanities. Find out more at or follow SAS on Twitter at @SASNews.
  4. The University of London is a federal University and is one of the oldest, largest and most diverse universities in the UK. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University is recognised globally as a world leader in higher education. Its members are 17 self-governing member institutions and nine research institutes of outstanding reputation. Learn more about the University of London at