Deborah is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President, Research & Innovation, providing leadership and guidance to achieve the University’s strategic priorities for research and innovation and focusing on quality assurance and enhancement. In addition, she is responsible for supporting the research portfolios within the Schools and Institutes. Professor Sweeney joined Western Sydney University in 2009 as the Director of Research for the College of Health and Science, then was nominated Associate Pro Vice Chancellor Health and Science in 2011 before being appointed PVCR in July 2014.
Professor Sweeney has more than 20 years’ experience in research and research management. She has a PhD in Optometry from the University of New South Wales (1992) and more than 20 years’ experience in research and research management, also holding various executive roles within the Cornea and Contact Lens Research Unit and Vision CRC and its predecessor the CRC for Eye Research and Technology, including five years as Chief Executive Officer of Vision CRC. Deborah Sweeney is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry. Her major research area has been corneal physiology, and her work has been instrumental in developing an understanding of the physiology of the human cornea and the effects of contact lens wear and refractive surgery on corneal function characteristics and the development of alternative forms of vision correction.
Professor Sweeney has published over 100 refereed articles and several book chapters, and is a co-inventor on two patents. Deborah Sweeney is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She is also a member of Intersect’s Board Audit and Risk Management Committee.