Originally known as Dean's Committee on Faculty Planning and Development, the committee was appointed in 1970 following the University's reorganization of the administrative machinery for planning and allocating resources to academic departments. A joint committee of Senate and Council, the Joint Committee on University Development (JCUD), oversaw this process, with a series of faculty sub-committees reporting to it. The latter were chaired by the Dean of Faculty and were responsible for each faculty's quinquennial (5 year) planning, annual budgeting and academic building provision. The JCUD and the faculty sub-committees played an important role in allocating money to fund academic posts, an issue of particular sensitivity in the period of financial economies from the mid-1970s onwards.
Post-1974 minutes are retained by the Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences.