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Robert H. Wilson, Interim Dean​
Robert H. Wilson, Interim Dean​
Inspired by President Lyndon B. Johnson's vision, the School engages in contemporary public policy challenges--sustainability, security, development, diversity, effective governance and public accountability, among others--through rigorous graduate degree programs and innovative policy research.

“We have a School of Public Affairs offering training for careers in public service which will try to produce thinkers and doers: people who dream of progress and will try and turn those dreams into achievements.”

President Lyndon B. Johnson at the dedication of the School and LBJ Presidential Library, May, 1971.  

We aspire to be transformational. Students come to the School with a sense of purpose and passion about the world wishing to use their life’s work to improve it. Through acquired mastery over concepts and exposure to cutting-edge policy research and debates, our graduates engage meaningful careers in a wide range of professional venues.

The School is a place of opportunity, inclusiveness and obligation. Acceptance into a university in the early modern European period meant joining a community where members were afforded certain rights, including participation in open inquiry and respect for freedom of expression. Membership, however, conveyed obligations to serve the collective endeavor. The LBJ School is indeed a place for reflective study but membership engenders an obligation to public service and to ethical behavior in professional conduct in an increasingly diverse nation and interconnected world.

… I thought that the greatest contribution that we could make to preserving freedom in our land—a society that would give us the fruits of life as we should have them—would be to prepare and equip people to serve their fellow man, and that is what public affairs is and that's what it means,"

President Lyndon B Johnson address to LBJ School students, Bass Lecture Hall, December, 1972

As the field of public policy itself has evolved, the School’s academic programs have diversified. The increasing need for specialized training in many policy fields is reflected in 27 dual degrees programs. We have recently launched the DC concentration in the master's degree programs, managed by our LBJ Washington Center, that includes a six-month professional internship in public service.

The School draws upon a world-renowned, multidisciplinary faculty, a diverse and talented group of graduate students, a dedicated student support staff and the resources of The University of Texas at Austin--one of the world's leading research universities. The exceptional resources for historical analysis of policy issues at the LBJ Presidential Library  and policy challenges in trend-setting Austin, the State of Texas and Latin America provide an accessible public policy laboratory. We are truly at the intersection of knowledge and action.

The School’s global reputation in health and social policy; international affairs; security studies; technology policy; energy and environment; urban issues; and public and nonprofit management and leadership confirm our aspirations. Our success results from forging strong relationships and partnerships with public policymakers, businesses, international agencies, non-governmental organizations, the media and governments at all levels. Our effectiveness in channeling the purpose and passion of students into professional careers that affect the world is evident in the success of over 4000 graduates. The LBJ School is well placed to shape public policy for the 21st century. As we say at UT, “What starts here changes the world.”

I have been privileged to serve my academic career in this extraordinary School and to be currently serving as interim dean. Follow my year as interim dean at @TheLBJSchool using #DeanBob #AYearinTheLife.

I invite you to engage in our endeavor.

Bob Wilson, Interim Dean