Morning, Tuesday, 22nd September 2020
***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***
This conference will be an opportunity for policymakers and stakeholders to examine the next steps in delivering the Economic Vision for the Oxford - MK - Cambridge Arc, and implementing and co-ordinating the region’s four Local Industrial Strategies.
There will be discussion on how to achieve the ambitions set out in the strategies around productivity, place-making, skills, connectivity and the environment - and what can learned from progress so far.
It follows Government’s commitment in the Budget earlier this year to develop a long term spatial planning framework to support planning decisions in the Arc region and the commitment to explore plans for Northstowe, a new town in Cambridgeshire.
We also expect a major focus for delegates on the day to be priorities for the Arc’s economic and social recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Further areas for discussion include:
- the four Local Industrial Strategies and a single economic vision for the Arc
- innovation and maximising the Arc’s knowledge economy
- the ‘Arc’ brand
The discussion in detail:
- How to further support innovation and the ways in which the region’s universities and businesses can further contribute to the fight against the pandemic and increase collaboration
- Promoting the Arc as a place to invest and the region’s likely impact on wider UK growth in economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic
- The challenges for bringing together the distinct priorities of each constituent part of the Arc into a coherent strategy for the region as a whole - including the governance and joint working arrangements to deliver the plans and the recovery from COVID-19
- Assessing the skills policy set out in the region’s industrial strategies that look to build a system that:
- responds to local demand
- supports businesses in the region
- meets the aspirations of the economic vision for the Arc
- How to maximise the benefits of the significant infrastructure developments planned for the region - including:
- East-West Rail
- the roll-out of both fibre broadband and 5G
- potential road projects that could support the Arc as Highways England considers the next steps following the Government’s decision to pause work on the Oxford to Cambridge expressway
- Further development of the Arc’s clusters - including its seven Enterprise Zones - and how to achieve the ambitions in the joint declaration to position the Arc and its research and development resources to provide a testbed for new technologies
- The support available for SMEs in the supply chain to scale-up and increase exports amidst concern that some start-ups could be priced out of the region because of high rents and about lack of laboratory space
- How the Government and local partners can work together to market the Arc globally, looking at:
- broadening the established brand of the regions to attract businesses, investors, talent, and visitors
- building on existing strengths of the region’s constituent areas
- learning from the Northern Powerhouse and Midlands Engine concepts
- The economic vision for the Oxford-MK-Cambridge Arc and key priorities in the wake of COVID-19
- Bringing the four LIS together and implementing the economic vision for the Arc - skills, infrastructure development, and business support across the Arc
- Building on the region’s research base - priorities for investment in new technologies, industry-university collaboration, developing clusters, and the continuing contribution to tackling COVID-19
- What next for the region’s brand and attracting inward investment
- Policy priorities for growing the Oxford, Milton Keynes and Cambridge Arc economy and COVID-19 recovery
Policy officials attending:
Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders.
This conference looks no different. Places have been reserved by representatives from BEIS; MHCLG; the Department for Transport; Homes England; the Government Legal Department and the Department for International Trade.
This is a full-scale conference taking place online***
- full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
- information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
- conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
- speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
- opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
- a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
- delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
- networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!
Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference