Amanda Woodward reappointed as dean of the Division of the Social Sciences

Prof. Amanda Woodward has been reappointed dean of the Division of the Social Sciences at the University of Chicago.

The William S. Gray Distinguished Service Professor of Psychology, Woodward brings to the role deep experience as a widely recognized scholar in the social development of infants and young children. In a message announcing Woodward’s appointment, President Paul Alivisatos and Provost Katherine Baicker highlighted how Woodward’s “leadership and vision have advanced the eminence of the division” since her tenure began in 2017.

“The Division of the Social Sciences serves as an important locus of intellectual inquiry and education at the University,” Baicker said. “Throughout Amanda’s tenure as dean, the division has become more widely recognized for its eminence and distinct scholarly offerings. I am delighted that the division will continue to benefit from her vision, advocacy and leadership.”

In her role as dean, Woodward has helped recruit exceptional early-career and senior scholars to the division who strengthen, expand and transform the University’s leadership in the social sciences. She also has supported the development of academic units and programs at the leading edge of social science inquiry. Notably, she was instrumental in establishing the Department of Race, Diaspora, and Indigeneity, along with the new Ph.D. program in political economy—a joint enterprise with the Harris School of Public Policy.  

Under her direction, the division has expanded its support for doctoral education and improved the career trajectories of graduate students through the sponsorship of dissertation completion fellowships, the First Year Scholars Program, the Peer Mentoring Program, the expansion of the social science Teaching Fellows program and the Alumni-in-Residence program. 

In partnership with the College, Woodward has supported innovative approaches to providing undergraduate curricular and co-curricular programming to students, including the launch of new academic programs and initiatives that involve undergraduates in faculty research. She has led new alumni engagement initiatives and fostered connections among current students and alumni of the division’s graduate programs.

“It has been an honor to serve as dean of the Division of the Social Sciences and I am proud of all that has been accomplished during the last six years,” Woodward said. “I look forward to continuing our transformative work, in partnership with my colleagues, in the years ahead.”