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Full audio from our Cambridgeshire and Peterborough metro mayor hustings held in Cambridge on 28th March 2017.

From May, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough will have a new mayor with powers over transport, planning and skills. The elected metro mayor will have an important opportunity to set out and implement a strategic vision for the economy of the metro area, supporting people, firms and institutions to build a more prosperous region in the decades to come.

As the campaign for the election gains momentum, Centre for Cities and Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce, organised a hustings for candidates to set out their plans to drive growth in the city-region.

Speakers:

Cllr Kevin Price, Labour
Rod Cantrill, Lib Dem
Cllr James Palmer, Conservative
Peter Dawe, Independent

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Full audio from our West of England metro mayor hustings held in Bristol on 22nd March 2017.

From May, the West of England will have a new mayor with powers over transport, planning and skills. The elected metro mayor will have an important opportunity to set out and implement a strategic vision for the economy of the metro area, supporting people, firms and institutions to build a more prosperous region in the decades to come.

As the campaign for the election gains momentum, Centre for Cities and Business West organised a hustings for candidates to set out their plans to drive growth in the city-region. This event was kindly hosted by KPMG.

Candidates:

Tim Bowles, Conservative
Lesley Mansell, Labour
Stephen Williams Liberal Democrats
Darren Hall, Green Party
John Savage, Independent

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In this month’s episode, Andrew is first joined by Alexandra Jones (Chief Executive of the Centre) and Naomi Clayton (Policy and Research Manager at the Centre) to discuss what the spring Budget means for cities. Looking at the Government’s business rates relief measures, the introduction of T-levels and the rise of self-employment, the team give their insights on what this means for cities.

The big issue scrutinised in this month’s podcast is how to make growth inclusive? To tackle this tricky question, Andrew Carter is joined by panellists Katie Schmuecker, Head of Policy at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Dr Neil Lee, Assistant Professor of Economic Geography at the LSE.

They consider what inclusive growth actually means, how it can be achieved and whether it is even desirable. Asking why the majority of people experiencing poverty live in a working household (a staggering figure of 3.8 million people in the UK) Andrew and his guests turn to the UK’s long-standing poor productivity performance compared to some of our competitor nations. With automation on the rise, especially in low skilled sectors such as retail, the panel goes on to consider what the future of work holds and question whether universal basic income is a potential solution.

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In this month’s episode, Andrew discusses the Government’s new industrial strategy and what it could mean for UK cities, with former Business Secretary Rt Hon Vince Cable, Nesta’s Director of Innovation Policy and Futures Louise Marston, and Gavin Kelly from the Resolution Trust.

Vince shares some fascinating stories from about his time in Government, including the battle he faced in making the case for an industrial strategy to Cabinet colleagues, and his regret at not having done more to address strengths and weaknesses in different places. The panel also discuss the legacy of failed industrial strategies from the 1970s in deterring successive Governments from attempting similar initiatives, before looking at how Brexit might affect industrial strategy in the context of competition, exports and international trade.

Before that, Andrew is joined by the Centre’s Chief Executive Alexandra Jones and Principal Economist Paul Swinney to discuss the biggest political developments of the past month, including the Government’s Brexit plans and its new housing white paper.

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In this month’s episode, Andrew is joined by Alexandra Jones and Paul Swinney to discuss what's in store for 2017.

In the main part of this episode, Andrew talks to Greg Clark and Tim Moonen from strategy firm The Business of Cities about two books they have written: World Cities and Nation States and Global Cities. The first book explores the changing relationship between nation states and the increasingly dominant cities they are home to, and the second provides a historical perspective on this development. Greg and Tim outline the different national contexts world cities find themselves in – centralised states, federal states and states that grant cities special status – and then go on to discuss how these affect approaches to cities policy.

The conversation touches on how the degree of urbanisation might impact thinking on cities in different countries, which country gets it most right when it comes to managing their cities, and whether London's dominance makes the UK an outlier internationally. The discussion ends with a look to what the future of urbanisation might look like, both around the world and in the UK.

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In this month's episode, Andrew begins with a brief look at what came out of the Autumn Statement with colleagues from the Centre. Chief Executive Alexandra Jones looks at what the Statement revealed about the relationship between No. 10 and No. 11, and Paul Swinney gives an overview of the Northen Powerhouse strategy paper. Finally Andrew asks his guests whether we're likely to see a slowdown in new devolution announcements.

After that, Andrew debates the impact of Brexit on cities with the economist Vicky Pryce and Prof Tony Travers from the London School of Economics. The discussion begins with a survey of the geography of the EU Referendum vote, and what part economic issues played in how people voted. The conversation then touches on the effect the result is having in Whitehall, what cities can do to influence the government's approach to negotiations, and whether delivering Brexit will take attention away from other priorities (such as devolution to city regions). Finally, discussion turns to how cities can take advantage of the new government's emphasis on industrial strategy.

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On this month's City Talks, Andrew begins with a brief look at the upcoming Autumn Statement with colleagues from the Centre. Chief Executive Alexandra Jones gives her best guess on what kind of tone Philip Hammond will set, and Principal Economist Paul Swinney wonders whether further devolution packages will wait until after the Mayoral elections next year. After that Andrew dives into the gentrification debate with author and journalist Anna Minton, Shelter's Head of Policy Toby Lloyd, and the Centre's very own Ed Clarke, who's recent blog on the issue spurred a lot of discussion on Twitter. The panel look at how the advent of the post-industrial economy has made city living more attractive, why displacement of poorer residents matters to the economy, and how best to manage urban change. Also touched on is whether Ruth Glass' definition of gentrification is still relevant, the problems with Aneurin Bevan's vision of mixed communities, and what Jane Jacobs really thought about the changes to Greenwich Village.

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In this month's episode, Andrew talks to Dr Thomas Kemeny, co-author of the book The Rise and Fall of Urban Economies, about the insights to be gained from comparing the diverging economies of Los Angeles and the Bay Area in California. In the 1970s, the two city regions were performing at a similar level, but since then the latter has become home to one of the most productive clusters in the world (Silicon Valley), while the former has not kept up with other cities in the United States. Kemeny discusses how the book tries to explain this divergence, making use of several disciplines and sources of evidence. The conversation touches on the changing fortunes of LA's film industry, whether the Bay Area will remain at the 'cutting edge' of new ideas, and the role of networks in encouraging innovation. It ends with a discussion of the importance of cities understanding their place in the global economy, and how our understanding of economic development has changed in recent years.

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With new mayors of major English city regions on the horizon, Alexandra Jones finds out about how the institution works in the US and what lessons can be drawn and applied in the UK. In the first part she speaks to Dr Benjamin Barber, author of If Mayors Ruled The World and convener of the Global Parliament of Mayors (which has its inaugural meeting in the Hague this weekend). The conversation touches on the need for a change of attitude on the part of central government towards cities, how the mayoral institution encourages pragmatism, and what Bernie Sanders was like as Mayor of Burlington in Vermont.

In the second part, Alexandra speaks to Jorge Elorza, Mayor of Providence in Rhode Island, about how he's trying to reinvent the city's post-industrial economy and the kinds of qualities successful mayors have. The conversation touches on how to reform the way local government can raise revenue, why he is uninterested in ideological debate, and the need for mayors to have strong executive powers and be bold in their approach to tacking the challenges faced by their cities.
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In this episode of City Talks, Andrew asks why the seemingly simple solution to the housing crisis in cities – namely building more homes – is so difficult in practice. The discussion looks at the obstacles to developing 'brownfield' sites in built-up areas, whether wariness over building on the green belt is ebbing, and the impact devolution and new metro mayors may have on planning decisions in city regions. Also touched on is how First Past The Post encourages NIMBYism, the potential of 'factory-made' housing, and why we should stop associating the green belt with the Chilterns.

Joining Andrew are John Dickie, Director of Strategy & Policy at London First, Kathleen Kelly, Assistant Director of Policy and Research at the National Housing Federation, and Marc Vlessing, Founder and CEO of Pocket Living Ltd.
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