The LSCC annual conference on September 12, 2016, featured wide-ranging conversations about the London Stansted Cambridge Corridor and its future.
Attendees discussed and welcomed the findings of the London Stansted Cambridge Growth Commission, including the vision that over the next twenty years the Corridor would become a World-leading global tech and life sciences region – with many attendees adding that meant high quality places would be required, and inequality issues would need to be tackled.
Delegates talked about how well placed the Corridor is to thrive and make the most of its businesses and places – about devolution – which could lead to more collaboration, rail improvements, new towns, long term growth and investment, international competitiveness, world class universities and the role of Stansted Airport.
As incoming chair, Alex Jones, said, four themes emerged through the day, the four I’s, as she dubbed them.
Innovation: the importance of making the most of higher and further education institutions, talent and skills, and creating and supporting high quality places with great cultural offers to nurture innovation.
Infrastructure: the need to invest in physical infrastructure – including stronger transport links, making the most of assets like Stansted, quality places and providing more housing – as well as human infrastructure including skills and the information, advice and guidance that can help people make informed choices.
Investment: the need to find ways to increase investment in the area, including through greater financial flexibilities, working with the public and private sector to make the most of the area’s assets.
Identity: the importance of establishing a much stronger brand and ‘story’ for the Corridor and making sure local people, government and national and international businesses know about it.
Speakers and delegates talked about how to make this happen through coalition, coordination and collaboration, ensuring that the London Stansted Cambridge Consortium continues to make the most of being an innovative cross-party group that encompasses a big geography.
People in the Consortium and across the Corridor work together because, by having a shared vision, they can make what they do as individual organisations more effective and add up to more than the sum of their parts. In the months ahead, the LSCC will need to build on the insights from the Growth Commission and from all those who attended to ensure it tells the story and makes the most of the area’s potential to be a globally competitive innovation corridor.
Find out more about the conference here: