As longest serving Dean of the Business School after an incredible eight years, Professor Wendy Loretto is stepping down and reprising her full-time role as Professor of Organisational Behaviour.
Headshot of Professor Wendy Loretto

An alum of the Business School herself, Wendy graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) degree in 1990. In the early part of her career, she worked for one of Britain’s most established retailers, Marks and Spencers plc, but the lure of academic research brought her back to Edinburgh to undertake a PhD.

Having seen the School grow in expertise and internationalism over the best part of three decades, firstly as a student and then as lecturer, she brought a huge amount of experience and passion to the role of Dean, when she was appointed to the position in February 2017. She previously held the roles of Director of Undergraduate programmes, REF Director, Director of Research, and Deputy Dean.

During her tenure as Dean, there have been many highlights achieved under her leadership. Notable successes include:

  • Successful reaccreditation visits by AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA ensuring we maintain our triple accreditation status highlighting our quality of teaching and excellence of research.
  • Launch of several new Masters programmes in response to changes in the market and what prospective students value such as our MSc in Global Strategy and Sustainability.
  • Successful participation in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 which placed us firmly in the top 20 business schools in the UK. Our GPA score, which measures the quality of the overall research profile, ranked us joint 17th out of 108 business schools.
  • Award of the Athena SWAN Silver award in 2023 in recognition of the positive work done within the School to promote diversity and gender equality among staff and students. This superseded the Bronze Award awarded in 2016.
  • Launch of the School’s first online programmes including our Online MBA and MSc in Data and Decision Analytics in 2023, allowing students to experience the benefits of our world-class teaching from wherever they are in the world.
  • Growth of the student population of nearly 30 per cent to over 2,200 students in 2023/24.
  • Development of some of our now flagship student experience activities ranging from the Edinburgh Award to the Employability and Careers Expo and significant expansion of the School’s coaching culture.

Reflecting on the past eight years, Wendy said:

It has been an immense privilege to lead the Business School through a time of change, growth and quality improvement and I fully believe there is even more we can achieve. I am looking forward to being part of our exciting future under Gavin's leadership.
Professor Wendy Loretto

In stepping down as Dean, Wendy will continue in her role of Professor of Organisational Behaviour in the School. She has also recently been appointed to Chair of AMBA (Association of MBAs) and BGA (Business Graduates Association). She has shown a huge commitment over the years to business education and through her role as chair she will continue to raise the profile and quality standard of business education internationally.

Wendy’s leadership qualities have been recognised by many external organisations including the abrdn Financial Fairness Trust; the Society for the Advancement of Management Studies; AACSB International; the Association of Business Schools; and the UKRI external advisory group for equality, diversity and inclusion.

Wendy’s successor

Her successor in the role of Dean is Professor Gavin Jack who has taken up the post this month. He has most recently been Head of Department of Management at Monash University. Upon accepting the role, Gavin said:

After several years in Australia, I am excited to return to Scotland and the inclusive and collaborative culture of the Business School, one of many achievements fostered by Wendy’s leadership.
Professor Gavin Jack