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UCA appoints its first Professor of Music as Pro-Vice-Chancellor

The University for the Creative Arts (UCA) has appointed Professor John Pymm as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement and Portfolio Development).

John is an international authority on Minimalist Music who has undertaken ground-breaking research in the music of Steve Reich at the Paul Sacher Stiftung in Basel, Switzerland.

He is President of the Society for Minimalist Music, and has recently contributed to Rethinking Reich (Oxford University Press: 2019) and to the current edition of Contemporary Music Review, which focuses on the impact of archival research on our understanding of recent music.

John has a wealth of experience in curriculum development and quality assurance, and has been in wide demand across the university sector on review and validation panels.

In 2016, he was invited to join the panel for the review of the QAA Benchmark Statement for Music and was subsequently appointed to the Arts and Humanities panel in 2018 and 2019 for the Pilot Subject TEF. He has been at the forefront of developing partnerships between universities and private music providers across the UK.

International work has been a major theme of John’s career. He has established successful Trans-National Education partnerships in Europe, India and South-East Asia, as well as pioneering articulation arrangements in Panama and the Dominican Republic. John has been responsible for many EU-funded international research projects, including a £500k Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE) that develops the concept of mindful design to enable people with dementia to engage in social contexts to improve psychosocial wellbeing. He previously led a transformational TEMPUS TACIS project in the creative sector and tourism in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

A keen musician, John says, “I have always wanted to work in a specialist arts university, and joining UCA is an exciting opportunity for me. There are many opportunities for expanding work internationally and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Leadership Team to take the University to its next phase.”

John joins UCA from Wolverhampton University, where he was Dean of the Faculty of Arts, on 1 July 2019.

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