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Professor Adam Schembri
Professor Adam Schembri

University of Birmingham Professor Adam Schembri has been elected as a Corresponding Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

The Australian Academy of the Humanities is a fellowship of over 660 humanities leaders. The academy is one of Australia’s five learned Academies - independent organisations established to encourage excellence in their respective fields and to provide expertise and advice at public, institutional, and government levels.

This year Professor Adam Schembri joins a cohort of 37 Fellows - 24 Fellows, 5 Corresponding Fellows and 7 Honorary Fellows - who have been elected to the Fellowship.

“I am delighted to be elected by my Australian colleagues to the Academy. I know that this honour reflects an interest from the Academy in highlighting the work I have done on the signed languages of deaf communities, but this work would have been impossible without the collaboration of many deaf and hearing colleagues in Australia and the UK.”

Professor Adam Schembri - University of Birmingham

Professor Schembri said: “I am delighted to be elected by my Australian colleagues to the Academy. I know that this honour reflects an interest from the Academy in highlighting the work I have done on the signed languages of deaf communities, but this work would have been impossible without the collaboration of many deaf and hearing colleagues in Australia and the UK. I am also aware these communities have been excluded from academia for too long. I hope my new role in the Academy will help me to continue working with colleagues towards changing that.”

Professor Tom Lockwood, Head of the School of English, Drama and Creative Studies, said: “All of us in the School of English, Drama and Creative Studies are thrilled with the news of Adam’s success: his becoming a Corresponding Fellow of the AAHA means that the research he does, and the contribution he makes towards our better understanding of sign and other languages, are now as well recognised internationally as they are already here in Birmingham.”

Founded in 1969, the Australian Academy of Humanities was established by Royal Charter to advance knowledge of, and the pursuit of excellence in the Humanities. The first intake comprised of only several fellows which included: historian George Blain, philosopher David Hector Monro, Geographer Oskar Spate and the Academy’s most distinguished Honorary Fellow John Cawte Beagle. With the purpose to ensure the humanities in Australia thrive and excel. With the belief a better future for all humanity depends on ethical, historical, creative and cultural knowledge and expertise.

“The calibre of these new Fellows is a testament to the continuing strength of the humanities in Australia today, despite the many difficulties experienced by the sector over the past few years. Today we recognise the excellence of their work, and their vital contributions in areas of cultural, social and environmental thought, policy and planning”, said Academy President Emeritus Professor Lesley Head FASSA FAHA.