Staff profile - Ruth Rentschler

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Prof Ruth Rentschler

Position: Chair Of Academic Board
Faculty or Division: Corp Governance Risk & Complia
Department: Corporate Services
Campus: Geelong Waterfront Campus
Phone: +61 3 924 46228 +61 3 924 46228



Ruth is a Professor in Arts Management at Deakin University, Australia. She has 20 years’ experience working in governance, management and marketing in the non-profit sphere at local, state, national and international levels. She has leadership experience in entrepreneurial, start-up, business, government and higher education positions. She is a DAAD scholar, a St Hilda's College, University of Melbourne scholar and recipient of various awards and prizes. She graduated first class honours, first place, from the University of Melbourne. She completed her PhD at Monash University.

Ruth has been re-elected as Chair Academic Board at Deakin University. She is also on the boards of VicHealth, Multicultural Arts Victoria, Ballarat Art Gallery and the Duldig Gallery. Her interest in governance is wide and deep, linking research, policy and praxis.

She has conducted governance research in Australia for visual arts organisations, arts ministries, performing arts organisations (to name a few) and has spoken internationally on the topic in the UK, Europe and Taiwan as an invited key note speaker. Ruth's other research interests focus on diversity and inclusion in arts management. Over her time at Deakin she has secured over $1.5 million in research grants (including category 1 grants) to investigate arts management social and economic policy issues. Ruth has just completed a research monograph on arts governance as the first in a series on the cultural and creative industries for Routledge, London.

She has taught at postgraduate level in arts management and doctoral studies. She initiated and designed the arts management program at Deakin, bringing it to the forefront of postgraduate arts management education nationally and internationally.  She has conducted key note addresses in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia on a range of contemporary issues in her field, such as arts governance, audience diversity, arts marketing and arts management. She has published widely including the research books. Examples include: The Entrepreneurial Arts Leader Brisbane: University of Queensland Press; Creative Marketing Palgrave MacMillan, London (with Ian Fillis); Routledge Companion to Arts Marketing Routledge, London. (with Daragh O’Reilly and Theresa Kirchner); Marketing Museums: Competing in the Global Marketplace Butterworth-Heinemann, Oxford (with Anne-Marie Hede); Innovative Arts Marketing, Allen & Unwin, Sydney.

Ruth has received recognition such as the Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Outstanding Community Service, the Faculty of Business & Law Award for Outstanding Research, Best Doctoral Supervisor Award in the Faculty of Business and Law, all at Deakin University. She has also received best paper awards at conferences. In 2012, she was awarded a Medal for the Order of Australia (OAM) for services to education, to the arts and to the community.
She is on the editorial board of various international journals. She is the book editor for the International Journal of Arts Management. She is also Chair of the 2nd international doctoral symposium in arts management in 2015 in Marseilles, France as the precursor to the international arts management conference, AIMAC. She is a member of the scientific committee for AIMAC.


  • Bachelor of Arts (Honours), University of Melbourne, 1976
  • Graduate Diploma in Personnel Administration, Victoria College, 1986
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Monash University, 1999


Board member, Multicultural Arts Victoria
Board member, Art Gallery of Ballarat
Board member, The Duldig Studio
Board member, VicHealth
Research ambassador, German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst)
Book review editor, International Journal of Arts Management

Professional activities

Member, Australian Institute of Company Directors

Conduct workshops for AICD and Leadership Victoria on governance in non-profits and the arts

2013 Coordinator Doctoral Symposium, 12th International Conference on Arts & Cultural Management

2011, Sir John Monash Key Note Lecture, 'Cultivating a Creative Community?', Monash Gallery of Art


Expertise summary

Professor Ruth Rentschler OAM MAICD Professor Ruth Rentschler is an experienced non-profit director. She is Chair Academic Board and Chair and Professor Arts Management, Deakin University. She is on the boards of VicHealth, Art Gallery of Ballarat, Multicultural Arts Victoria and the Duldig Gallery. She is a member of University Council and the University Executive. She is on the boards of the international arts management association (AIMAC) and various refereed journals. She has worked with many national, state and local organisation boards. She has conducted governance research in Australia for visual arts organisations, arts ministries, performing arts organisations (to name a few) and has spoken internationally on the topic in the UK, Europe and Taiwan as an invited key note speaker. She is contracted to Routledge UK to write a book on arts governance.

Knowledge areas

Governance, diversity, and the arts

Student supervision

Doctoral projects Completed:

Jonathan Sweet UNESCO and colonial museums in the Asia-Pacific Region, 1946- 1980 graduated April 2011

Rimi Khan (University of Melbourne) Multicultural community arts: Self-government and the management of difference graduated 2009

Megan Cardamone (ARC APAI scholar) Indigenous cultural micro-enterprises and new media, graduated 20 April 2009

Tabitha Ramsey White (VicHealth scholar) The social impact of art on the individual, graduated 20 April 2009

Marcus Morgan (Deakin scholar) Effective board practices in implementing the mission of nonprofit Australian and American arts organisations

Jon Hopwood (Deakin scholar) Identifying multiple creative process factors of a live event concept

Sarah Broadbent (Deakin scholar) Brand Love and the AFL 

Conferences and seminars

12th International Conference on Arts and Cultural Management, Bogota, Columbia, 2013

Media appearances

Spinning the Celebrities ArtsHub

Marketing political brands: Passionate punters need consistent messaging The Conversation

The reinvigoration of Geelong a fine art Geelong Advertiser

Arts organisations need a brush with good governance The Age

Montsalvat goes pro Valley Weekly

Arts governance: Survey shows report is off beam The Age

Below the bottom line Not-for-profit boards Company Director

Vic arts boards pass the test The Boardroom Report Company Directors


Awards and prizes

2012, Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to education, to the arts, and to the community.
2012 Faculty Research Rocket Award for Outstanding Publications
2012 Faculty Service Star Award
2006, DUSA award for best doctoral supervisor in the Faculty of Business and Law
2000, Faculty of Business and Law award for outstanding research
2000, Vice-Chancellor's Award for outstanding community service


Research projects

Indigenous Art Increasing Audiences Australia Council for the Arts a nationally funded project investigating how to boost audiences for Indigenous art

Stats and Stories Arts Impact on Regional Australia a nationally funded project investigating how the arts make a difference to peoples’ lives in rural and regional Australia

Research interests

Arts leaders' careers, including artists, managers, board members


Research page



Arts Governance: People Passion Performance

Routledge Companion to Arts Marketing

The Entrepreneurial Arts Leader.

Cultural and Entertainment Industries Handbook

Shaping Culture

Innovative Arts Marketing

Creative Marketing

Museum Marketing and Reflections on ANZAC Day. 

In 2003, Shaping Culture was published in Chinese, as it met the needs of the emerging creative industries in Taiwan.  

In 2000 and 2004, Best Paper Awards 

Numerous articles in journals, consultancy reports and research reports, available on 

Link to publications

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