Director, John Grill Institute for Project Leadership
Faculty of Engineering
University of Sydney
Professor Jennifer Whyte joined the University of Sydney in July 2021, and is Director of the John Grill Institute for Project Leadership. She is also Head of the School of Project Management, in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Sydney. She joins a strong team with the ambition to develop project leadership capability and capacity, and to make the University of Sydney the ‘go-to’ place for insights on project sponsorship, leadership and governance, through high quality executive education, through operating at the leading edge in the international research community and through giving independent advice to senior project sponsors and leaders, within NSW, across Australia, and internationally.
Jennifer brings substantial experience of leading interdisciplinary research teams to have impact on practice, working across departments, collaborating with industry members and partners, running showcase events with senior industry, policy makers and Ministers, and convening related Executive Education, CPD and MSc Programmes. She retains a position at Imperial College London, where she was Director of the Centre for Systems Engineering and Innovation, and the Royal Academy of Engineering and Laing O’Rourke Professor of Systems Integration in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (2015-2021). At Stanford University (2015), she was Shimizu Visiting Professor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department. At University of Reading (2008-2015), she was Director of the Design Innovation Research Centre and a Professor in Innovation and Design at the University of Reading. Her first degree is from University of Cambridge and her PhD from Loughborough University. She did postdoctoral research at SPRU, University of Sussex, and Imperial College London.
Her research has has significant impact on transforming industry and policy. She is a member of the UK Construction Leadership Council (currently through the Senior Advisory Group (2021-); previously a Board Member(2019-2021)). She sits on the UK’s EPSRC Engineering Strategic Advisory Team; is a Board Member of the ICSF ‘Transforming Construction’ Advisory Board; and previously sat on the MHCLG Building Safely Committee (2018-2019), set up after the Grenfell Disaster. She gave evidence to the UK’s Lord’s Select Committee Inquiry on Offsite Manufacturing for Construction in 2018.Funded research projects include the “Transforming Construction Network Plus”, RCUK; “Analysing Systems Interdependencies in the Digital Twin” , funded through Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) and “Grand Challenge III, Data-Driven Design under Uncertainty” as part of the Alan Turing Institute/Lloyds Register Foundation ‘Data Centric Engineering’ Programme. She has previously won awards through the prestigious EPSRC ‘Challenging Engineering’ scheme for future research leaders, and held an Advanced Institute of Management Research mid-career fellowship in Management Practices. She co-curated the World Economic Forum (WEF) ‘Engineering and Construction’ Transformation Map (2016-2019). She has worked with Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority to deliver Singapore’s Integrated Digital Delivery strategy, draw on her research to train more than 100 senior executives.