Anne Lonsdale has been Deputy Vice-Chancellor in the University of Cambridge since October 2003. Prior to this she was Pro-Vice-Chancellor for External Relations since July 1998, and a member of the University's Council and a Trustee of Cambridge in America, the Cambridge Commonwealth Trust and Cambridge Overseas Trust. She remains a Trustee of the Cambridge Foundation,the Gates Cambridge Trust, the Newton Trust, and the Cambridge European Trust, and is also Chairman of the Syndicate for the Fitzwilliam Museum.
She has been President of New Hall, one of the colleges of Cambridge University, since February 1996. From 1993-6 she was Secretary-General of the Central European University based in Budapest, Prague and Warsaw and founded by George Soros in 1991. She developed a major interest in environmental research and policy since she was involved in the setting up of a Department of Environmental Sciences and Policy at the CEU Budapest for students from all the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former USSR, and was previously Chairman of the University's Committee for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies.
Her career began at Oxford where she studied and taught classical Chinese literature before becoming a university administrator, and, in 1990, the first Director of External Relations the University had appointed. She has travelled and worked extensively in America, Europe, Asia and Africa, and has been active for many years in both European and Commonwealth university organisations. Outside the University she is a Trustee of the British Association for Central and Eastern Europe, the Inter-University Foundation and the Moscow School of Social & Economic Sciences.
Anne Lonsdale was awarded the CBE in 2004 for services to Higher Education.