We are in a period of change and transition, but however the policy landscape changes over the next year, it is likely that local communities will continue to endure hardships for some time as the economy enters a new period of uncertainty and austerity measures already announced impact on public services, NGOs, families, and individuals.
Despite the probability of continuing hardship, a new consensus is emerging that inequality is not only morally unacceptable and politically destabilising but bad for economic growth. Both the IMF and OECD have highlighted the dangers of inequality and a new phrase – inclusive growth – has become popular as a guiding principle for practice in local economic development.
Drawing on the experiences and the role of Fairness Commissions as part of broader alliances with civil society and local communities, the focus today is on how local authorities can build on and develop existing achievements beyond 2016 .
The seminar is about:
- Fairness Commissions
- Inclusive Economic Growth
- Working with local communities to promote equality
The morning sessions will deliver information and advice on the practical steps local authorities can take to protect the most vulnerable in their communities, support the living standards of local people, and distribute the impacts of austerity and the proceeds of growth fairly.
The afternoon session will be led by Professor John Diamond, co-researcher on a national study funded by the Webb Memorial on Fairness Commissions. The afternoon session will allow participants to engage in depth with the issues raised both with the speakers and each other.
Much of the material for this seminar will be based on a special edition of the journal Local Economy on Framing Fairness in Austere Times. Free copies of the papers in the edition will be available at the seminar.
Speakers confirmed so far:
- Andrew Jones, London South Bank University (Chair)
- Professor John Diamond, Edge Hill University
- Charlotte Alldritt, RSA
- James Henderson, Sheffield City Council
- Professor Martin Jones, University of Sheffield
- Dr David Etherington, Centre for Enterprise and Economic Development (CEEDR) Middlesex University
09:55: Welcome: Andrew Jones
10:00: Can inclusive growth tackle poverty? What might this mean at a local level? Charlotte Alldritt, RSA
11:00: Can a devolved employment and skills system support inclusive growth? Martin Jones, University of Sheffield & Dr David Etherington, Middlesex University
12:00: Delivering an anti-poverty strategy: The case of Sheffield James Henderson, Director of Policy, Performance and Communications, Sheffield City Council,
14:00: Building Fairness in Local Communities: Professor John Diamond
- Devolution and civic engagement post-Brexit: What next?
- Fostering inclusive economic growth: A break with the past?
- Communities against poverty: With or against local government?
- What lessons can we draw from practice?