The Ramsay Centre is led by CEO Professor Simon Haines. He is supported by Academic Director Professor Diana Glenn and Chief Financial Officer Emily Williams.


Professor Simon Haines is a distinguished scholar, teacher and author, and passionate advocate for the humanities.

Educated in Iraq, England and Australia, Simon took a BA at the Australian National University and a DPhil in English literature at the University of Oxford.

He worked as a banker in London and then as a diplomat and analyst with the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Office of National Assessments. He led the OECD Budget Committee as Chairman from 1985-1987.

Simon then taught English Literature at the Australian National University from 1990 to 2008, where he also served as Head of the School of Humanities.

In 2009 he was appointed Chair Professor and Head of English at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, where he also served as Director of the Research Centre for Human Values. He is a founding member of the Hong Kong Academy of the Humanities.

In 2017 he was appointed CEO of the Ramsay Centre.

Simon is the author or editor of five books including the prizewinning Reader in European Romanticism (Bloomsbury, 2010, 2nd paperback edition 2014) and Poetry and Philosophy from Homer to Rosseau (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005) His most recent book is the edited volume Shakespeare and Value (Routledge, May 2018).

Our Academic Director

Professor Diana Glenn is an experienced and dedicated leader in Higher Education, a Dante scholar and award-winning tertiary educator. She holds a Master of Arts from Flinders University and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Dante Studies from the University of Western Australia.

Before joining the Centre, she was the National Head of the School of Arts at Australian Catholic University, and before that, the Dean of the School of Humanities and Creative Arts at Flinders University.

She has previously taught at the University of Melbourne and the University of Adelaide, while undertaking research in Dante Studies, migration and twentieth century Italian literature. She has also served as Lead Co-ordinator (Australia) for the ICI (Instrument for Co-operation with Industrialised Countries) EU-AU Joint Mobility project ‘Border Crossings: People and Places’.

A distinguished scholar, Diana has presented her research locally and overseas, and has published numerous scholarly articles as well as authoring and co-editing nine books, including Dante’s Reforming Mission and Women in the Comedy (Troubador Italian Studies Series, 2008), ‘Legato con amore in un volume’: Essays in Honour of John A. Scott (Olschki, 2013), and Italian Identities (Troubador Italian Studies Series, 2020). Her most recent book is the co-authored, commemorative volume, La seconda casa: A history of the South Australian Italian Association (SAIA, 2021).

She is also a Fellow of the Governor’s Leadership Foundation, Leaders Institute of SA.


Our CFO and Company Secretary

Emily Williams is a chartered accountant with close to two decades experience working in senior financial roles for listed companies, strategic advisory firms and not-for-profits. Her corporate experience includes Ernst & Young, Stockland and David Jones.

She holds a Bachelor of Business (Accounting) degree (2002) from the University of Technology Sydney and qualified as a chartered accountant in 2005.

She was appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the Centre in 2019, which sees her act as strategic partner to the CEO and deputy CEO in commercial negotiations. She also oversees the overall financial management of the Centre.

In addition to her CFO role, Emily serves the Centre’s Board of Directors as Company Secretary.