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Shard Summit brings together UK/US metro mayors

Shard Summit brings together UK/US metro mayors

🕔01.Dec 2017

Seven months after taking office, England’s new metro mayors will come together next week with counterparts from US cities for the UK’s first ever international mayoral summit in London, reports Kevin Johnson

The UK-International Metro Mayors’ Summit, organised by the respected think tank Centre for Cities, Citi and Boston University’s Initiative on Cities, will take place on 5th December.

It will bring together the new metro mayors, who were elected in six of England’s biggest city regions in May this year with mayors from American cities including Louisville, Tampa, Fort Worth, Charleston and Providence – places which face similar policy challenges to the UK’s mayoral city regions.

The University of Warwick is also supporting the Summit along with UK programme partner Arup and Bloomberg Philanthropies. 

£80m for Warwick’s new national battery facility

Andy Street will be joined by the other new metro mayors:

  • James Palmer, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough
  • Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester
  • Steve Rotheram, Liverpool City Region
  • Ben Houchen, Tees Valley
  • Tim Bowles, West of England.

US mayors taking part in the summit include:

  • John Tecklenburg, Charleston (South Carolina)
  • Betsy Price, Fort Worth (Texas)
  • Greg Fischer, Louisville (Kentucky)
  • Jorge Elorza, Providence (Rhode Island)
  • Bob Buckhorn, Tampa (Florida).

The Summit kicks off on Tuesday morning at Warwick Business School’s facility at London’s Shard building with a keynote discussion about the role and responsibilities of mayors in the 21st Century – locally, nationally and internationally.

Centre for Cities says the Summit has three central aims:

  • To support UK and US mayors to create a platform to exchange ideas and experiences
  • To help the mayors develop a global network that will enable them to maximise their collective influence
  • To explore new business and trading opportunities for their respective city regions.

Simon Swain, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for External Engagement at the University of Warwick, commented:

We are delighted to be supporting this important Summit and look forward to welcoming UK and US Mayors to WBS London.

The formation of the West Midlands Combined Authority and the election of a Mayor for the West Midlands have been very significant developments for our region.

This Summit will provide a vital opportunity to bring together UK metro mayors and some of their US counterparts to share experiences and take a lead on policy solutions.

As this Summit will demonstrate, leading academic institutions – both in the US and UK – are playing an ever more active role in partnership with political leaders, businesses and others in areas ranging from improving productivity to automotive technology.

The Summit will also offer the mayors the opportunity to meet with UK government ministers including Greg Clark, Secretary of States for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. He will advise the mayors on how they can make the most of their individual and collective influence to lobby national governments.

Other summit sessions will examine issues such as how the mayors can use their formal and informal powers most effectively, what they should consider when building their mayoral institutions, and how they can develop a positive brand for their city regions.

Andrew Carter, Chief Executive of the think tank Centre for Cities, said:

The election of England’s metro mayors in May this year was a landmark moment in the UK’s devolution process, and one Centre for Cities had long campaigned for.

Now we want to ensure the mayors can be as effective as possible in their first term, by learning from the experiences of their US peers.

We hope this summit will be the first step in forging a partnership between the UK and US mayors which will enable them to have the biggest possible impact – both in their city regions, and on the national and global stages.

Mayor Street ticked off with Department for Education

Bob Annibale, Global Director of Community Development and Inclusive Finance at Citi said:

The UK’s newly elected metro mayors have the opportunity and responsibility to develop new and innovative policies in a range of areas that are critically important to sustainable regional growth including housing, transport and education.

This summit provides an essential platform for experienced U.S. mayors to share ideas, best practices and expertise with their U.K. counterparts as they develop their policy agendas.

Graham Wilson, Director, Boston University Initiative on Cities, said:

Mayors around the world are taking the lead in addressing problems not only of local, but of international significance.

The opportunities this summit offers for dialogue between experienced US mayors and UK mayors, who are in practice creating the office not only for themselves, but for their successors for decades, is an exciting example of transatlantic dialogue.

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