Author Archives: davidsweeting

Can place-based leaders deliver progressive policies?

The US mid-term elections indicate a troubling increase in the already well-known political divide between urban and rural areas in the USA.  Put simply, rural areas backed the Republicans and cities and suburbs supported the Democrats.  In this article, first posted on the Open University Place-based Leadership website, Robin Hambleton examines the recent US election results and considers the possibilities for progressive place-based leadership.

Progressive Mayors and Urban Social Movements

Can imaginative mayors form progressive governing coalitions that can tackle growing inequality in cities and other social ills?  This is the central question addressed in a new series of articles published by the free online journal Metropolitics.  In his contribution to this series ‘Inclusive Place-Based Leadership: Lesson-Drawing from Urban Governance Innovations in Bristol, UK’ Robin Hambleton outlines a way of conceptualising progressive place-based leadership, and reports on the steps now being taken by Bristol’s Mayor Marvin Rees, and other civic leaders in the city, to test this model in practice.

British universities – the sleeping giants of place-based leadership?

The Civic University Commission, launched by the University Partnerships Programme (UPP) in March 2018, is an important effort to lift the quality of debate about the changing role of British universities in modern society.  In this Alternatives Paper, published in the online journal People, Place and Policy in September 2018, Robin Hambleton suggests that, while many British universities now see themselves as ‘civic universities’, few can claim to be world leading in this regard.  The article examines the changing role of universities in cities and offers a number of suggestions on how universities can become much more active local leaders.

What Bristol tells us about how to lead cities

Robin Hambleton comments on lessons from Bristol for other cities in England.  First published on the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) website on 31 March 2015 he suggests that the centralisation of power in Whitehall is holding cities back.

http://www.rtpi.org.uk/briefing-room/rtpi-blog/what-bristol-tells-us-about-how-to-lead-cities/

Policy report published on mayoral governance in Bristol

We have produced a policy report on mayoral governance in Bristol. You can read the report, which includes analysis of data from before and after the introduction of mayoral governance in the city, here.

The report was launched at the Institute for Government on Friday 13th March 2015. You can see the presentations by the mayors of Bristol and Leicester at the event here.

Leading the Inclusive City

In a new, international book Robin Hambleton examines the role of civic leadership in fostering the creation of inclusive cities.  The analysis presented in Leading the Inclusive City suggests that place-based leadership can make an important difference to the quality of life in a city, notwithstanding the pressures of global forces.  Innovation Story 2 in the book, which draws on the Bristol Civic Leadership Project research, provides insights on the impact of the mayoral model of governance in Bristol.  More information:

http://www.policypress.co.uk/display.asp?K=9781447304968

Devo Manc and the Osbornification of public policy

Far from being a positive example of decentralisation, Robin Hambleton argues that George Osborne’s proposals for ‘devo Manc’ are the latest example of ‘centralisation on steroids’.
You can read the argument in full on the LSE British Politics and Policy blog.