This research project aims to address important questions regarding the future leadership and governance of the city of Bristol:
- What difference do key stakeholders and citizens in Bristol think a Directly Elected Mayor will make?
- What steps can be taken to ensure that the introduction of a DEM brings about benefits and avoids potential disadvantages?
- What initial differences in governance and practice can be identified following the move to the Mayoral model?
To answer the first question we are carrying out a ‘before’ assessment of the existing governance of the city and stakeholder expectations of the move to the Mayoral model. The research team will address the second and third questions by working closely with the stakeholders to learn from their experience of changing the governance of the city and to contribute ideas drawn from research on other cities.
Key stakeholders are local politicians, council officers, the business community and the voluntary and community sectors. The project will seek to identify key aspirations, opportunities and concerns, as well as learning acquired through practice during the move towards a Mayor. Key findings will be folded back in to the policy process, in an iterative process, to facilitate further learning.
The project runs from September to December 2012 and is funded by Bristol City Council.