EMASS Program Director Statement

Associate Professor Kathryn Welch

Associate Professor Kathryn Welch, Program Director, Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences (EMASS)

I am delighted to commend the new Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences (EMASS) to you.

The EMASS is a unique degree that has been designed after significant consultation with employers and students. The result is an innovative, cross-disciplinary program based on the idea that human relationships lie at the heart of successful leadership. This focus is what makes the EMASS so special – and different.

The EMASS vision is to produce sensitive, broad-minded, empathetic and creative leaders whose effective decisionmaking is based on a thorough appreciation of: public policy, historical context, cultural nuances, human diversity in all its forms, the complexities inherent in social interaction, and the physical and ethical constraints imposed by nature and society.

Led by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the EMASS also involves a number of faculties at the University of Sydney. It combines traditional humanities and social sciences strengths (public policy analysis, cultural awareness and sensitivity, ethical reasoning and critical analysis) with professional skills in problem solving, leadership and project management as well as legal and communication strategy. Moreover, and for the first time, it makes it possible to fully exploit the University’s broad and internationally recognised strengths in humanities and social sciences training.

At the heart of the EMASS is the idea that in order to be effective, a leader needs to understand who their stakeholders are, how they think, what they think and why they think the way they do. In other words, an EMASS leader can empathise with their stakeholders; recognising their desires and respecting their fears, identifying the behavioural constraints they face, understanding their motivations, and acknowledging their philosophical outlook. The EMASS aims to produce a particular kind of leader; one who places people at the centre of every decision they make.

In addition, it recognises that a crucial part of leadership involves leading by example; defining a vision, communicating it and educating those responsible for implementing it. An EMASS leader, therefore, is part decision-maker and part educator.

During your EMASS study program you will, for example, be able to choose from subjects in cultural studies, economics, political science, law, media and communication, history, English and creative writing, development studies, environmental sustainability, education and social work and organisational culture.

You will, in this way, be able to tailor your study program to your own specific intellectual interests and professional circumstances.

You will also have the opportunity to round out your study with an industry placement that will allow you to apply in the real world the disciplinary insights and professional skills you have acquired while studying with us. The EMASS provides you with a truly flexible and practical learning experience.

In short, if you aspire to positions of leadership in which you can make a significant difference while also inspiring those around you to do likewise, then I urge you to seriously consider the EMASS as the means by which you realise your dreams and fulfil your goals. I wish you the best of luck with your postgraduate studies.

Associate Professor Kathryn Welch
Program Director
Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences (EMASS)