On his appointment, Ive – who previously attacked design schools for failing to teach their students how to make products – cited the institution as a “profound influence”.
“I am thrilled to formalise my relationship with the RCA, given the profound influence the College has had on so many of the artists and designers that I admire,” he said.
“Our design team includes many RCA alumni, who embody the fundamental values of the College. I look forward to advising both the College and students, hoping that my experience proves useful in their work.”
When Tim Cook took over leadership of Apple in 2011, Ive was given responsibility for the human interface department before being promoted to the role of chief design officer as part of a company reshuffle in 2015.
RCA rector Paul Thompson said the appointment of Ive, who holds an impressive 5,000 patents, aligns with the college’s focus on technology and design.
“It is a great honour to be joined by the world’s leading designer of his generation, who has produced consistently innovative and commercially successful technology and design,” said Thompson in the statement released by the college.
“As Chancellor, Jony embodies the RCA’s ideals of technology and design excellence, inspiring students and staff, and enabling us to educate the next generation of world-leading artists and designers.”
This year, the RCA – whose School of Design alumni include Thomas Heatherwick, Paul Cocksedge and Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg – beat American colleges MIT and Parsons to take the top spot as world’s best art and design school in the seventh annual QS University Rankings.
In 2020, the school will move into its new Battersea campus designed by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron, which fought off competition from a shortlist of six other high-profile firms to win the contract.