Deryck Schreuder has had a long career in education and scholarship and is currently, in addition to being Honorary Professor with Sydney School of Education and Social Work, an Adjunct Professor at the Humanities Research Centre, The Australian National University.
Born in colonial Africa, he was educated in Malawi and Zambia, and then at Rhodes University, Cape Province, South Africa. He was a history teacher at his Zambian high school during decolonisation and independence (1963) before he was elected as a Rhodes Scholar to Oxford from Zambia. He was awarded his Oxford D Phil in 1967 where he was then made Kennedy Fellow in Modern History at New College. He later worked in Canada, where he was a member of the founding faculty of the new University of Trent in Peterborough, Ontario. He first came to Australia with his family in 1976, as a research fellow in the Research School of Social Sciences at ANU.
Rhodes University (his alma mater) conferred on him a Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) at its own Centenary in 2003 as one of its six most distinguished graduates.
Deryck was second Vice Chancellor and President of The University of Western Sydney [now Western Sydney University]; Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) at Macquarie University; fourth Challis Professor of History at The University of Sydney (the foundation chair of history in Australia); Associate Director of the Humanities Research Centre at The Australian National University; 16th Vice Chancellor and President of the University of Western Australia; President of the Australian Vice Chancellor’s Committee (2002–2003) and a member of the Council of the Association of Commonwealth Universities. He has also been closely involved with scholarly organisations and served extensively on professional bodies.
Deryck was Chair of the Board of the Australian Universities Quality Agency, which preceded the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency; a member of the Development Advisory Group for the Research Quality Framework; and Convenor of the annual national conference on university governance.
Throughout his career, Deryck was been recognised for his scholarship with invitations to visiting research professorships at leading universities internationally and awarded the title of Emeritus Professor at Macquarie University, The University of Western Sydney and The University of Western Australia.
In 2008, Deryck accepted an invitation to Chair the Prime Minister’s Australian History Prize Advisory Committee for that year.
A renowned scholar of modern international history, with a special interest in colonial and post-colonial societies, Deryck has written extensively on imperial and colonial history. His publications include the “Australia” volume in the Oxford History of the British Empire Companion Series, edited with Stuart Ward (OUP, 2008).