GuildHE has today announced that Prof Kerstin Mey, Director of Research and Enterprise at the University for the Creative Arts, will become the second Director of the Consortium for Research Excellence, Support and Training (CREST). Prof Mey will take over the post from Prof Graeme Wilkinson, Pro Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) at Glyndwr University, who is leaving to become Vice Chancellor of Sunway University in Malaysia.

Prof Wilkinson reflected on his experiences as the first Director of the Consortium:
“CREST has been a very exciting and unique project that has enabled the smaller and more specialist HEIs within GuildHE to work together collaboratively to build their research. Many of these institutions have excellent research and CREST has provided the framework within which their researchers, often working in small groups in their own institutions, can engage with the wider academic community and forge partnerships for research collaboration, for bidding for joint grants and for organising research training activities in a cost effective and mutually supportive way. CREST has already led to some exciting new collaborations as well as new grants being awarded. I am sure that the framework laid down by CREST will help to develop further and consolidate the important research already taking place.”

Prof Mey, who will assume the Directorship in June 2012, said:
“I feel very privileged to have been entrusted with the Directorship of CREST. This is a thriving platform for small and specialist Higher Education Institutions, enabling them to share their research strengths and research training expertise and continue to build capacity and capabilities in these areas.”
Prof Mey is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and provides research reviews for international funders and publishing houses. She has been a member of the UUK Sounding Board of Experts for the Horizon 2020 programme. She studied Art and German Language and Literature, and completed a PhD in art theory/aesthetics in Berlin, Germany. She also took a PG programme in European Cultural Policy and Administration at Warwick University, UK. Since 1990 she has held academic positions in universities in Germany and the UK.

Her own research is concerned with the situatedness and models of contemporary cultural practices; public pedagogies; art, documentation and archiving; and knowledge production at the interface of art and science. Publications include the authored book Art and Obscenity (2007); and edited volumes: with Smite and Smits, Artistic Research (2011); with Kroenke and Spielmann: Kulturelle Umbrüche: Identitäten, Räume, Repräsentationen (2007); On-Site/In-Sight, special issue Journal of Visual Art Practice, Vols. 4.1/2 (2005); Art in the Making: Aesthetics Historicity and Practice (2004). She was Artistic Director of ISEA 2009, the 15th International Symposium on Electronic Art, held in Ireland.

Looking to the future, Prof Wilkinson voiced his support for Prof Mey and the Consortium:
“My successor has already contributed so much to CREST, driving forward many initiatives, and I am absolutely delighted that she will take over as the CREST Director. This bodes very well for the Consortium and for the participating institutions. I look forward to watching the developments in the years to come.”

Prof Mey noted the many opportunities open to innovative HEIs imbued with an ethos of research excellence and collaboration:

“In a situation where funding for research and research training focuses on ‘research excellence with impact’, there are opportunities for CREST members to harness and join up their specialist knowledge and focused connections to places, communities and businesses, to shape innovative partnerships and pioneer approaches to subject-specific and cross-disciplinary research and research training.”

Andy Westwood, CEO of GuildHE, said:
“We owe Graeme Wilkinson a debt of thanks after he has helped to establish CREST as a highly valued research consortium. We are also delighted that Kerstin Mey is taking over as Director and we know she will help to take CREST from strength to strength and further develop its capacity and value as a shared service and centre of excellence in the HE research community. We look forward to working with her.”


For more information and comment, please contact:

Alisa Miller
Policy Officer – Research, GuildHE
Tel: 020 7387 7711

Andy Westwood
CEO, GuildHE
Tel: 020 7387 7711
Mobile: 07970 007142

Notes to editors

1.    The Consortium for Research Excellence, Support and Training (CREST) provides an innovative model for how to further research excellence and promote institutional and interdisciplinary collaboration. The CREST exists for institutions that have achieved high levels of research excellence concentrated in smaller communities of research practice, in order to
•    create a collaboration of equal partners seeking to achieve research excellence through collegiality and mutual support
•    achieve collective and individual innovations in translational research with benefits for students, society and industry
•    build research capacity within participating institutions and secure critical mass together while retaining diverse, student-centred, research-led learning environments
•    provide an external structure for the sustainable delivery of the research objectives of members and the promotion and promulgation of their achievements.
More information is available at

2.    CREST is a sub-association of GuildHE, the recognised higher education representative body. For a list of GuildHE institutions, please visit: