Dean, School of Engineering and Digital Sciences

  • Full-time
  • Department: School of Engineering
  • Job Type: Administrative-academic staff
  • Grade: N/A

Company Description

Times Higher Education ranked NU in the top 30 percent in the 2024 World Universities Ranking. NU is ranked first in Central Asia and in the top 10 among ASEAN universities.

Established in 2010, we are the flagship research-intensive University for Kazakhstan and Central Asia. The capital city of Astana is linked to both Asia and Europe and has a mission to develop a knowledge economy, based on strong and robust institutions.

NU is an autonomous English-Language university with a mandate for world-class research, teaching, and innovation. We have international faculty from 61 countries and international students from 35 countries who create a strong and ambitious scholarly community and are willing to take leadership roles.

The School is preparing for program accreditation with ABET.

The School offers these programs: 

  • Undergraduate programs in Chemical and Materials Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Robotics Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Computer Science.
  • Masters programs in Chemical and Materials Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Masters in Engineering Management, Masters in Biomedical Engineering, Masters in Electrical and Computer Engineering, Masters in Robotics, Masters in Computer Science, Masters in Data Science.
  • PhD programs in Chemical Engineering, Robotics Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering and PhD program in Science Engineering and Technology.

The School emphasizes technical excellence and creative problem-solving, and teaches core curriculum compulsory courses in computer science to all undergraduate students.

Job Description

Main Duties and Responsibilities

Clarify Vision and Strategy

  • Clarify and implement the School's strategic direction through the Strategic Plan.
  • Actively support program and institutional accreditation and/or evaluation, consistent with University policy.
  • Establish and maintain an appropriately constituted industry or professional advisory group.
  • Contribute to University committees and activities and communicate University policies to the School.
  • Work with the relevant departments and Chief Administrative Officer to oversee the School's financial resources according to University policies, relevant legislation, and the strategic direction of the School.
  • To oversee annual budget-setting for the School, in consultation with the Chief Administrative Officer.
  • To ensure that all School committees, including the Industry Advisory Board, are constituted and operate regularly at appropriate times during the academic year.
  • Develop and continuously review student recruitment targets, consistent with University policy.
  • Collaborate with other Schools, Research Centers, and units on curriculum, research, and teaching to ensure efficient use of University resources.
  • Encourage appropriate applications for graduate study and career opportunities for the School’s graduates.

Lead People

  • Reward faculty and staff who uphold the strategy of the School.
  • Ensure a fair, safe, and harassment-free work and study environment in accordance with NU policies.
  • Create a supportive and enriching academic environment for students.
  • Continuously review plans for the staffing needs of the School.
  • Recruit high-quality faculty who can contribute to the University’s international research and academic impact.
  • Ensure faculty receive regular reviews of performance in accordance with University policy, and that action plans for continuous improvement are implemented.
  • Be responsible for faculty promotion and provide career guidance to faculty as needed.
  • Conduct regular staff/faculty satisfaction surveys and communicate results and action plans to the School.
  • Uphold the values of the university, including academic integrity, as stated in NU Learning and Teaching Strategy and other university policies.
  • To coordinate, mentor, develop, and appraise direct reports.

Foster a Research Culture

  • Define and communicate the School’s research strategy.
  • Develop own research interests, in consultation with the Provost.
  • Promote research integrity, ensuring that all School faculty and staff uphold research ethics when planning, conducting, and reporting research and scholarly activities.
  • Lead the School's national and international external relationships.

Consistent with university policy, encourage technology transfer and commercialization of intellectual properties developed by faculty and students. 

Integrate Research and Teaching

  • Uphold the University Learning and Teaching Strategy.
  • Oversee the quality enhancement of courses and programs using the NU Quality Framework.
  • Collaborate with other Schools to optimize teaching and learning resources, including sharing of courses and sharing faculty resources, as appropriate.
  • Ensure that student feedback on courses and programs is communicated to faculty and that action plans are developed and implemented.

The Dean will also undertake any other duties and responsibilities required for the success of the School, in consultation with the Provost.

This job description reflects the present requirements of the post and, as duties and responsibilities develop, the job description will be reviewed and be subject to amendment in consultation with the Dean.


- The Dean is the principal officer of the School of Engineering and Digital Sciences (SEDS) and is responsible for the strategic leadership and executive management of the School.

- The Dean must have an earned Ph.D. from an internationally accredited University and have held the rank of Full Professor in an appropriate discipline for at least five years, with an international record of scholarship. We anticipate the successful candidate will have several years of experience in an academic leadership role.

- Having a global view, open-mindedness, and proven experience in cooperation with other disciplines and other Deans are essential elements for success in this role.

- Unique strategic strengths within the School lie within the broad areas of Electrical Engineering, Materials Engineering, Robotics, and the highly productive ISSAI: Institute for Smart Systems and Artificial Intelligence.

- The Dean will actively seek research funding from: industry; government agencies; international grant agencies; non-government entities; local and international universities. This funding will help support faculty initiatives as well as specific institutes and research centers on campus. These centers will be available for interdisciplinary research on campus as well as for national and international scholars and policymakers

Additional Information

Recruitment and selection process
Recruitment and selection at Nazarbayev University include the following process: preliminary selection based on experience and qualifications, assessments (e.g. technical skills/capabilities, aptitude, personality, work samples, in-basket exercises, and informal interviews), and motivation.

Formal interviews form the final stage of the selection process.
They are typically based on organizational values and behaviors and conducted in English.
You are encouraged to share your views and values  to identify how they fit into  Nazarbayev University core values