Opinion Piece – Emeritus Professor Nigel Bond Retires

Opinion Piece – Emeritus Professor Nigel Bond Retires


Nigel Bond

Professor Kate Stevens from the School of Social Sciences and Psychology reflects on Emeritus Professor Nigel Bond’s time at UWS …

We all know Emeritus Professor Nigel Bond as an admired and respected colleague – Nigel is experienced, wise, affable, humane. As scientists of human behaviour, we might ask ‘what are the antecedents and mechanisms that explain Nigel’s behaviour?’.

Nigel earned BSc and PhD degrees from the University of Nottingham. He was appointed Senior Tutor at Macquarie University in 1973, worked his way up the ranks to Associate Professor in 1987, and then moved to Flinders University in 1992 becoming Professor and Head of School. Nigel was appointed Pro Vice-Chancellor (Academic) to UWS Macarthur in 1996.

I recall Nigel’s arrival at UWS in 1996 and the thrill at attracting such an established and distinguished researcher; his contribution had been recognised in 1995 as an Elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences of Australia. Nigel’s early research included investigation of animal models of learning and psychopathology; he had authored a book Animal Models in Psychopathology published by Academic Press in 1984, and was well known internationally for his ground breaking research into foetal alcohol exposure and hyperactivity.

More recently, he and colleagues at UWS and UNSW have researched the peer review process, psychology in legal contexts, face recognition, and the cross-race effect. Over his career, Nigel has published more than 100 journal articles and book chapters, an introductory textbook in psychology, and has an h index of 22 (i.e. 22 of his publications have been cited at least 22 times). As Co-Executive Editor of the journal Appetite, Nigel has handled, in his wise, logical, and collegial way, hundreds of articles in just a few years.

Nigel is a brilliant and inspiring teacher, a subtle and empowering mentor. While Pro Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at UWS Nigel also taught into our psychology programs throughout those 10 years. Nigel introduced us to the use of technology in lectures and tutorials. While using the latest gadgets in teaching, Nigel has not been one for fads in unit content. Rather the hallmarks of his teaching are good science and cogent argument.

As Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor during the unification of UWS in 2000, Nigel oversaw the formation of 22 new schools including placing every academic staff member into a school. These were difficult times, well served by Nigel’s integrity. He was a prime mover speaking out when he sensed a process or policy was flawed – countering the logic or idea but never the person. To this day, Nigel seems to know all staff from those days and they are genuinely pleased to see him – testimony to Nigel’s humanity in those uncertain, tumultuous, and foundational times.

We are immeasurably fortunate to have worked with, been supported by, and learned from Nigel who retired on 5 December 2011. As is the way with great teachers, scholarship, and research, the legacy of Nigel’s work will resonate for decades.Kate Stevens


Kate Stevens
School of Social Sciences and Psychology & MARCS Institute