Inclusive Growth Seminar Series

Inclusive Growth Seminar Series – Speakers now confirmed

As Chair of the Oxford Strategic Partnership, I would like to invite you to a seminar series on Inclusive Growth in Oxfordshire. These seminars, held in partnership with Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, will explore how we can collectively enable a more equitable and inclusive economy in our county. I would welcome your participation and contribution to this important subject.

Oxford and Oxfordshire are among the fastest growing local economies in the UK but also one of the least equal, so we want to examine what fundamental structural changes may be required to ensure our future growth delivers benefits to all residents and serves to narrow the inequalities gap.

Through the seminars we want to develop a common understanding of this challenge, learn more about the measures and policy interventions being proposed, and what strategies are being trialled elsewhere. This will help inform what we can do here to have a meaningful positive impact on inequities in income and opportunity.

Oxfordshire’s Local Industrial Strategy now includes a commitment to an Inclusive Growth Commission, development of which will be informed by the seminar discussions. This initiative is to be sponsored through the Oxfordshire Growth Board.

I very much hope you will be able to join us, for the first and subsequent seminars on this important topic.

Warm regards,
Baroness Royall
Chair of the Oxford Strategic Partnership and Principal of Somerville College, Oxford

Seminar 1 – Defining the Challenge and Potential Interventions

Wednesday 16th October, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, Somerville College

The first Inclusive Growth seminar will focus on the research, policy and data on economic and social inequality to define the real scale of the challenge nationally and locally. We will start the discussion on potential interventions to be developed through the seminar series and beyond.

If you have not received an Eventbrite invitation, please register for seminar 1 here or click on this link:

Speakers confirmed as: Ed Cox, Dr Mark Fransham, Will Hutton and Professor Brian Nolan.

• Ed Cox is Director of Public Services and Communities at the RSA, where he is leading an ambitious programme of work on people, power, place and inclusive growth. Ed previously led IPPR North for 9 years where he was a champion for devolution and much of the thinking behind the ‘Northern Powerhouse’. Before that, Ed was an adviser to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government where he played a key role in developing the SubNational Review (2007) and the Empowerment White Paper (2008).

• Mark Fransham is a Researcher at the International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics. He is interested in comparative analysis of urban areas and their responses to economic and social change and has undertaken doctoral research at The University of Oxford about the spatial distribution of income poverty at neighbourhood level in England.

• Will Hutton is a British political economist, academic administrator, and journalist. He is currently Principal of Hertford College, University of Oxford, and Chair of the Big Innovation Centre, an initiative from the Work Foundation (formerly the Industrial Society), having been chief executive of the Work Foundation from 2000 to 2008. He was formerly editor-in-chief for The Observer.

• Brian Nolan is Director of Employment, Equity and Growth and Professor of Social Policy, Department of Social Policy and Intervention (University of Oxford). He is an economist by training, with a doctorate from the London School of Economics, and his main areas of research are income inequality, poverty, and the economics of social policy. His work seeks to understand why current growth models are failing those on middle and lower incomes in many developed countries, and what policies may help to promote better, fairer growth.

Seminar 2 – Place-based Strategies

Monday 28th October, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, Kellogg College

Economic inequalities and deprivation are often concentrated in specific areas of cities and towns, or affect places in specific ways. The solutions to the inequality challenge can also lie within these places strengths and opportunities. This seminar will focus on lessons learned from cities and organisations that are taking the initiative to lead publicprivate place based strategies and investments.

If you have not received an Eventbrite invitation, please register for seminar 2 here or click on this link:

Speakers confirmed as: Gareth Hart, Bev Hindle, Neil McInroy and Jayne Woodley.

• Gareth Hart is Chair of Plymouth’s Inclusive Growth Group, a working group of the Plymouth Growth Board. The Growth Board is a private sector led partnership, bringing together representatives from important city organisations to collaborate and drive forward the economic priorities of Plymouth. Gareth led the bid that saw Plymouth become the UK’s first ‘Social Enterprise City’.

• Bev Hindle is Director of the Oxfordshire Growth Board and Oxford to Cambridge Arc Leaders and Chief Executives groups. His is responsible for coordinating implementation of the £215 million Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal agreed with Government in 2018, which includes developing the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 that will consider the needs of the county and align its strategies so that plans for future housing and infrastructure are joined up.

• Neil McInroy is Chief Executive of the Centre Local Economic Strategies (CLES) a leading independent think and do tank, realising progressive economics for people and place. CLES’s aim is to achieve social justice, good local economies and effective public services for everyone, everywhere. Neil’s work as the Chief Executive is centred on strategic policy making, cooperation, developing strategies, and public sector reform.

• Jayne Woodley is CEO of Oxfordshire Community Foundation an independent charity connecting people who care with causes that matter. Since it was established in 1995 it has stewarded £12 million in donations from Oxfordshire’s generous givers, grown its endowment fund to nearly £5 million, and awarded £6.3 million in grants, benefiting around 2,000 local charities and community groups. They also host the responsible business group Reciprocate.

Seminar 3 – Economic Opportunities for All

Wednesday 20th November, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, City of Oxford College, Blackbird Leys Campus

This seminar will focus on the themes of workforce skills and training, employer engagement and initiatives, and the role the business sector can play to expand economic opportunities to all.

If you have not received an Eventbrite invitation, please register for seminar 3 here or click on this link:

Speakers confirmed as: Trevor Philips, Anna Swaithes, and Paul Roberts.

• Trevor Philips is a writer and television producer. He is the cofounder of the diversity analytics consultancy Webber Phillips, and Chairman of Green Park Interim and Executive Search. He is the Chairman of the global freedom of expression campaign charity Index on Censorship, a director of the Barbican Arts Centre, and a VicePresident of the Royal Television Society. He was the President of the John Lewis Partnership Council until 2018, and founding chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

• Anna Swaithes is Head of Responsible Business, Inclusive Economy Unit, Department for Media, Culture & Sport. Her focus is on building partnerships between government, business and broader civil society to create social value and build sustainable businesses, and on driving a culture of business transparency and accountability.

• Paul Roberts is the CEO of Aspire, an Oxfordshirebased social enterprise which supports vulnerable local people into and towards employment and housing. Aspire runs social businesses which offer professional facilities management services to local councils, businesses, academic institutions and private customers. He is also co-Chair of Oxfordshire’s multi-agency Housing & Homelessness Group, and a Director of Makespace Oxford (Community Interest Company).

Any queries please contact or Shelley Ghazi on

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