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November 7, 2017

TO: AU Staff and Faculty
FROM: Scott A. Bass, Provost
SUBJECT: AU 2030 Update

I am pleased to report that I have accepted the recommendations of the AU 2030 subcommittee of deans for the re-chartering of AU 2030 initiatives. In addition to identifying areas of continued focus, the committee included four new themes of inquiry.

As part of the annual faculty hiring process, we will select and prioritize several existing vacant faculty lines for hiring in the AU 2030 cluster. Vacant faculty lines across all academic units will be considered as a way to strengthen our research capabilities in high impact areas across different disciplines, fields, and professions. With this strategic investment, over time, these AU 2030 subject areas may well become signature areas of academic excellence and research distinction.

The re-chartered initiatives are

  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Big Data, Analytics, and Applied Data Science (formerly "Big Data")
  • Cities and Environmental Sustainability (formerly "Environmental Studies")
  • Game Design and Persuasive Play
  • Global Disability and Development (formerly "Disability and Public Policy")
  • Health, Risk, and Society
  • Internet Governance
  • Latin American and Latino Studies
  • Metropolitan Policy and Practice (formerly "Metropolitan Studies")

The new AU 2030 initiatives are

  • Humanities Lab
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • New Technologies and Emerging Threats
  • Social Equity Initiative

I am most appreciative of the subcommittee, which was composed of deans Mary Clark, Cheryl Holcomb-McCoy, Peter Starr, and Jon Tubman, for conducting the review and forwarding their thoughtful recommendations to the Deans' Council and me. Please join me in congratulating the faculty who led the efforts to have their respective topics selected as priority initiatives.

For additional information about the AU 2030 initiative, visit