Harry Bruce, a faculty member at the UW Information School, has been named dean of the school effective Jan. 1, pending approval by the Board of Regents.
Bruce was recruited to the university in 1998 by Mike Eisenberg, who is stepping aside as the school’s dean after almost eight years and will stay on the faculty.
Under Eisenberg, the “iSchool” was transformed — quadrupling its enrollment, securing more than $7 million in funded research, establishing its first endowed faculty position and introducing the UW’s first distance-learning master’s degree. Degree programs were added in informatics, information science and information management.
“It is a great privilege for me to continue the remarkable work of Mike Eisenberg with the highly talented Information School community,” Bruce said. “My leadership will focus on strategic growth, maturity, excellence, engagement, visibility and impact. The Information School will continue to lead, advocate and demonstrate the value of the information field on our campus and in the professional and scientific community.”
Bruce joined the university as associate director for research and program development for what was then the Graduate School of Library and Information Science.
“Harry has been a leader in the school through its transformation into the Information School, so he is well prepared to take the helm as Mike steps down.” said Provost Phyllis Wise in announcing the appointment, which had been recommended by a search committee of faculty and staff.
UW President Mark Emmert said he is excited by the prospect of Bruce stepping into this leadership role to build upon the school’s recent success.
“Mike, Harry and the faculty and staff have literally transformed what it means to engage in library work and information science,” Emmert said. “They are a model for what we are trying to do throughout the university, in terms of being highly interdisciplinary, highly inclusive, and having very high expectations.”
A native of Australia, Bruce holds a bachelor’s degree from Macquarie University and a master of librarianship and doctorate from the University of New South Wales. Before joining the UW, he taught at the University of Technology, Sydney. His field of research is human information behavior, information seeking and use and personal information management in networked information environments, including a National Science Foundation-funded project called Keeping Found Things Found.