The University of Sydney

The World100 Representative

Marian Theobald - Director of Marketing and Communications

With a background in print and television journalism, Marian Theobald has 24 years’ experience in higher education, 20 of which have been spent at the University of Sydney working in PR, communications and community engagement. In her role as Director of Marketing and Communications, she has led a number of major projects, including the first branding project in the University’s history, which resulted in a shift not only in the consistency of the University’s messaging and imaging, but in the institutional understanding of the importance of protecting and developing its brand. In the last five years, she has overseen the transition of the University’s marketing and communications function into a single shared service, and is currently leading a project to redevelop the University’s website.


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Recent News from The University of Sydney

Key facts about Sydney University

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Consistently ranked in the top 1% of universities in the world

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Year of foundation – 1850 (Australia’s first university)

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Students: More than 50,000

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International students: More than 10,000

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Academic staff: More than 3,000

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Faculties: 16

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Global network of alumni: 300,000

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Student exchange agreements: more than 286, in more than 30 countries

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Campuses: 10

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All discipline areas are ranked in the top 50 in the 2014 QS World University Rankings

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About University of Sydney

The University of Sydney is one of the world’s leading, comprehensive research and teaching universities – consistently ranked in the top 1% of universities in the world. It is ranked in the top 50 engineering and technology universities in the world and consistently ranked in the world’s top 25 universities for humanities and social sciences by the Times Higher Education. Sydney Medical School is one of the highest ranked medical schools in the Asia-Pacific region and our Business School’s Master of Management program is ranked number one in Australia by the Financial Times.

The University of Sydney is committed to the transformative power of education and to fostering greater knowledge and understanding of the world. Our aim is to make lives better not just by producing leaders of society, but by equipping our people with leadership qualities so they can serve all of our communities at every level.

As a leader in tertiary education we have been challenging traditions for more than 160 years. We were one of the first universities in the world to admit students solely on academic merit, and to open our doors to women on the same basis as men. In creating the first university in Australia in 1850, our founders recognised the power of education to change society. We hold that belief just as strongly today.

International Partnerships

We work in collaboration with Australian and international partners to find solutions to some of the world's most complex problems.

As a central part of its international strategy, the University is committed to fostering partnerships with other leading institutions and promoting mobility of students and staff. Our partners include some of the world's leading universities, and with them we take part in research collaborations, and academic exchanges. These include more than 60 research collaborations and networks with partners in Asia and India.

We also have more than 280 student exchange partners in Asia, Canada, Israel, Scandinavia, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Western Europe. In 2014, we signed a new partnership agreement with one of Europe's leading humanities institutions, Sciences Po, which allows students to split four years of study between one of three Sciences Po campuses and Sydney.

Notable Research Areas

Our research strategy is to nurture disciplinary excellence while enabling delivery of solutions to real‑world 21st century problems. Our research community includes more than 1300 research staff and almost 5000 research students. We are home to 75 research centres and three National Health and Medical Research Council Centres of Excellence, and a member of 10 Cooperative Research Centres.

In the Australian Government’s Excellence in Research for Australia benchmarking exercise, more than 75% of academic fields of research at the University performed above or well above world standard.

Our research is driven by the big picture. We take a problem and look at it from all angles by bringing together the world’s most talented researchers in multidisciplinary teams. We have committed substantial support and large‑scale investment to help them explore new frontiers of knowledge in areas of national and global importance. The work undertaken by a few of our multidisciplinary centres illustrates the potential of this approach.

The Charles Perkins Centre is tackling some of the greatest health challenges humanity has ever faced: obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and related conditions. The centre brings together outstanding minds to improve our understanding of the impact of diverse factors on these conditions, including psychological makeup, education, cultural norms, economic pressures, the built environment, and the agricultural and food industries.

The Brain and Mind Research Institute brings together patients, support groups and frontline carers with scientists and clinicians. The institute’s diverse research programs include healthy brain ageing, youth mental health and molecular neuroscience.

Research Breakthroughs


Protein and carbohydrates

Our researchers have made groundbreaking discoveries about how food intake is regulated. They have discovered that it is the proportions of dietary protein and carbohydrate that determine the number of calories we want to eat, not just the number of calories consumed. This knowledge has enormous implications for managing food consumption and hence body fat, heart and metabolic health, and ultimately lifespan.

Shaping the future

Recent findings on quantum computing will enable the completion of enormous calculations beyond the capability of conventional computers. The research was listed in ‘the 10 world-changing experiments that will shape the future’ in BBC Focus magazine.

Increasing agricultural efficiency

Our researchers have used specially designed robotic devices to increase efficiency and yield in farming and agriculture. The devices can autonomously sense, analyse and respond to their own surroundings. The approach has the potential to help Australia boost its crop production substantially and become the ‘food bowl’ of Asia.

Finding better ways to treat heart attacks

A world-first breakthrough by our researchers has the potential to transform the way heart attacks are treated. Discovered at the University of Sydney, it involves injecting microparticles into the bloodstream to reduce tissue damage.