About us

Founded in 1987, Yorkshire Universities is a charity and company limited by guarantee. The vice-chancellors and principals of Yorkshire’s higher education institutions are the members of the company and form its board of directors.


Yorkshire Universities works to maximise the contribution of higher education to the region, and beyond, through collaboration and partnerships, where this generates greater impact and public benefit.


Chair of the YU Board

Professor Koen Lamberts, University of York

Professor Koen Lamberts is Vice-Chancellor & President of the University of York. He is Chair of the N8 Research Partnership, Chair of the Employers Pension Forum for Higher Education and Chair of UKCISA’s Board of Trustees. He is also Deputy Chair and a Board Member of The Russell Group, the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership, the Outward Mobility Strategy Board, Universities and Colleges Employers Association, the White Rose University Consortium, the Worldwide Universities Network and Yorkshire Universities.


YU Executive Team

Dr. Peter O’Brien, Executive Director ⇢  p.obrien@yorkshireuniversities.ac.uk

Peter was appointed Executive Director of Yorkshire Universities in April 2018. Previously, he was Deputy Local Growth Consultant at the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). He is also a research fellow at the Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies (CURDS), Newcastle University, where he specialises in, and has published widely on, issues relating to urban and regional development and governance, and infrastructure funding and financing. Peter has worked at a senior level in local and regional government in the north of England during the past decade.


Professor Roger Lewis, Associate ⇢  r.lewis@yorkshireuniversities.ac.uk

Roger Lewis has worked for Yorkshire Universities since 2010 in various capacities, including Chief Executive (2010-2013) and Interim Executive Director (2017-2018). Before that he was HEFCE Regional Consultant for Yorkshire (and other northern regions) 1998-2009. His main academic interests are in student learning and how this can best be fostered by both individual academics and by the institutional environment. Within this his specialism (as both researcher and practitioner) has been open, distance and e-learning; this is his main area of publication. He was BP Professor of Learning Development at what is now the University of Lincoln (1992-1998). He is on the editorial boards of ‘Open Learning’ and ‘Active Learning’.


Monika Antal, Executive Manager ⇢  m.antal@yorkshireuniversities.ac.uk

Monika first joined YU in February 2014, as Project Coordinator of the ERDF funded Technical Assistance (YUTA). After YUTA finished she worked for the EU Policy Lab at the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission in Brussels for three years before making her way back to Yorkshire. She returned to YU as Executive Manager in January 2018.




Emma Dick, Executive Assistant ⇢  e.l.dick@yorkshireuniversities.ac.uk

Emma joined YU in March 2017, as Executive Assistant and Office Manager. Emma supports YU as an Associate of Virtual Hand, a virtual assistant services and business support organisation. Prior to working at YU, Emma worked on an ERDF Business Growth Programme at the University of Bradford.