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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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Full audio of our event in the Library of Birmingham discussing priorities for the new Mayor of the West Midlands, who will be elected in May 2017. The discussion touched on the need to build consensus across the rivalries in the region, how the Mayor can gain more powers to deliver for their electorate, and how to improve awareness of the office ahead of the vote.

On the panel were Gisela Stuart, MP for Birmingham Edgbaston, Paul Faulkner, Chief Executive of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, Marc Reeves, Editor of the Birmingham Mail, and Gill Bentley, Lecturer in Urban and Regional Economic Development at the University of Birmingham. The event was chaired by Andrew Carter, Deputy Chief Executive of Centre for Cities.

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Full audio of our event in Sheffield discussing priorities for the new Mayor of the City Region, who will be elected in May 2017. The discussion touched on the need for the Mayor to secure a "quick win" in order to demonstrate they can deliver to voters, the need to address low pay in the region, and the impact of Brexit on current local growth plans.

On the panel were Lord Blunkett, Former MP for Sheffield Brightside and leader of the city council, Dr Craig Berry, Deputy Director of the Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Sheffield, and June Smith, Membership and External Affairs Manager at EEF Yorkshire and Humber. The event was chaired by Alexandra Jones, Chief Executive of Centre for Cities.
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In this episode of City Talks, Andrew looks at the economic theory of 'agglomeration' – the idea that the productivity of cities increases with size. The conversation explores the reasons why we see this phenomenon, as well as some of the misunderstandings that can arise when trying to measure its impact. Also touched on is the bearing agglomeration has on the Government's Northern Powerhouse initiative, the need to ensure that economic growth is inclusive, and how the vote to leave the European Union might affect urban policy going forward. Joining Andrew are Alexander Lembcke, Economist and Policy Analyst in the OECD’s Directorate for Public Governance and Territorial Development, and Henry Overman, Director of the What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth.

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Ahead of the elections for a Greater Manchester Mayor in May 2017, Alexandra Jones chaired a public event in Manchester Town Hall on what their priorities should be in the first 100 of taking office. The panelists were Andy Burnham MP, Prospective Labour candidate for Mayor of Greater Manchester, Prof Francesca Gains, Professor of Public Policy at the University of Manchester, and Clive Memmott, Chief Executive of the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce.

The discussion touched on how the new Mayor can encourage greater participation in local democracy, the challenges following the vote to leave the European Union, and proposals to create a 'cabinet of the North' formed of mayors of northern city regions who will be able to champion and deliver the Northern Powerhouse.
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