Research Professor, WISERD Director 2010 - 2013
Cardiff University


Gareth is an Emeritus Professor at WISERD and in the Cardiff School of Social Sciences. He was Director of WISERD from 2010 until 2013.

He has carried out research in areas including: the social impacts of higher education; lifelong learning and the Learning Society; vocational education and training and economic development; the effects of UK devolution on education policy; and research-capacity building in the social sciences.

Gareth’s current research projects at WISERD explore: the impacts of changes in higher education on participation in civil society; widening access to higher education; and localities, participation in higher education and social and spatial mobilities.

Gareth is a Fellow of the UK Academy of Social Sciences and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.

WISERD Training & Capacity Building Programme 2008-11
The WISERD training and research capacity building programme was established in September 2009 with two objectives. The first was the implementation of a training programme, aimed primarily at professional researchers within the social sciences, and encompassing colleagues
Research Team:
Victoria Macfarlane, Gareth Rees (Cardiff University)
Impact and Effectiveness of Widening Access to Higher Education
The overall aim of the proposed research was to demonstrate the effectiveness of the secondary analysis of administrative data-sets to delineate patterns of participation in higher education (HE) and, thereby, to contribute to the development of policy and professional
Research Team:
Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Chris Taylor (Cardiff University), Rhys Davies (Cardiff University), Stephen Drinkwater (University of Roehampton), Ceryn Evans (Cardiff University), Caroline Wright
Social Participation and Identity - NCDS Project
Overview This project was a joint venture with the Institute of Education, Centre for Longitudinal Studies and the ESRC Centre for Research on Socio-cultural change (Manchester University). The main study, funded by ESRC, undertook 180 qualitative interviews with cohort
Research Team:
Amanda Coffey (Cardiff University), Huw Beynon (Cardiff University), Kate Moles (Cardiff University), Ian Stafford (Cardiff University), Alexandra Plows (Bangor University), Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Gareth Williams, Howard Davis (Bangor University), Ian Rees Jones (Cardiff University), Jesse Heley (Aberystwyth University), Laura Jones (Aberystwyth University), Rhys Jones (Aberystwyth University), Martin Jones (Staffordshire University)
Welsh Government Evidence Symposia
Overview This project was aimed at improving the linkages between research evidence and policy development in Wales (and elsewhere). It was based on a partnership between WISERD and the Welsh Government (WG); and involved the development of four Evidence Symposia, each of
Research Team:
Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Victoria Macfarlane
Academic Social Care Research Collaboration
Overview Working in partnership across Bangor, Cardiff and Swansea Universities and funded by the NISCHR, the All Wales Academic Social Care Research Collaboration (ASCC) sought to strengthen the capacity of HEIs and their partner agencies to deliver on an agreed and
Research Team:
Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Dianne Seddon, Judith Phillips, Nick Andrews, Martin O'Neill (Cardiff University), Victoria Macfarlane, Luke Cowie (Cardiff University), Karel Williams (University of Manchester), Julie Froud, Paula Hyde, Sukhdev Johal, Catherine Robinson
Evaluation of the Pupil Deprivation Grant
Overview The Pupil Deprivation Grant was introduced in 2012-13 and provides schools with additional resource to raise levels of achievement of a particular group of economically disadvantaged learners. This two-year evaluation looked at how schools have used this new grant
Research Team:
Rhys Davies (Cardiff University), Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Sally Power (Cardiff University), Samuel Waldron, Mirain Rhys (Cardiff Metropolitan University)
Higher Education and Civil Society
Overview This project explored the relationships between participation in higher education and engagement in civil society, especially at the local level. Do university graduates play a distinctive role in the institutions of civil society? More specifically, it examined the
Research Team:
Gareth Rees (Cardiff University), Chris Taylor (Cardiff University), Ceryn Evans (Cardiff University), Stuart Fox (Cardiff University)
Reports and Briefings
Is there a crisis in Welsh education?
The current state of Welsh education has become a matter of widespread concern inrecent years. Certainly, many of those outside Wales have formed a view of Welsheducation that is extremely unfavourable.
Education | December 2013
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Books and Book Chapters
Devolution, policy-making and lifelong learning: The case of Wales
This book brings together the perspectives of researchers, policy-makers and practitioners from across England, Wales and Scotland to produce a rich, up-to-date and highly textured source of evidence about this under-researched sector. The contributors analyse how each...
Education | January 2011