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.
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.
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:
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.
Significant insights that are emerging from the Bristol Civic Leadership Project are contained in a short ‘Policy Briefing’, published via Policy Bristol.
The Briefing, written by David Sweeting (University of Bristol) and Robin Hambleton (University of the West of England, Bristol), shows a dramatic increase in the public visibility of civic leadership in the city. This increase in visibility, however, is not accompanied by similar increases in public perceptions of trust in the council, nor views about representation in decision-making in the city.
You can download the briefing here: BCLP Policy Briefing October 2014
The work that the Bristol Civic Leadership Project team has been undertaking is contributing to academic debates on city leadership. An article by Robin Hambleton and David Sweeting has appeared in the journal Public Money & Management, in a themed issue on directly elected mayors alongside contributions on Germany, Australia and New Zealand, and other English cities. The article, called ‘Innovation in urban political leadership. Reflections on the introduction of a directly-elected mayor in Bristol, UK’, draws on data gathered before the introduction of the mayoral system in the city.
The issue is available via academic subscription on this link.
Hambleton, R. and Sweeting D. (2014) ‘Innovation in urban political leadership. Reflections on the introduction of a directly-elected mayor in Bristol, UK’, Public Money & Management, Vol. 34, Iss. 5, 315-322