Our Work

Regional economies across the UK currently face significant uncertainty as new business models and technologies continue to transform the conditions of production and the global distribution of economic activity.

Simultaneously, an increasing focus on the regional devolution of resources and decision-making is creating significant opportunities for city-regions to take greater control of their economic growth. These two trends have given rise to the emergence of a strong city-region research agenda, focused on understanding the on-going transformation of city-regions like Birmingham as they respond to external and internal drivers of change.

Until recently that development has been supported by economic, spatial or social research which was dominated by disciplinary-based studies rather than an inter-disciplinary perspective. No one has yet developed an integrated research or policy approach to regional economies. However we recognise that the ‘problems’ facing city regional economies are complex, multi-dimensional, multi-scalar and multi-disciplinary.

City-REDI is meeting this need by building a distinctive international research platform through the development of a Birmingham approach to understanding and facilitating growth in city-regions. This new systemic approach to identifying and conceptualising the inter-dependencies within and between regional economies is providing new opportunities for understanding, conceptualising, modelling and comparing economic activity and business trends at the city-region level.

The systemic approach seeks to move beyond disciplinary or thematic focussed research by developing an overarching conceptual framework for understanding the functioning and on-going evolution of regional economies.

What are we offering?

The Institute is:

  • At the forefront of academic debate on local and regional economic growth, as evidenced by high-quality research outputs.
  • Utilising a systemic and interdisciplinary “Birmingham approach” to understanding and facilitating economic development in city regions.
  • Attracting new, leading faculty in related fields to the University of Birmingham and providing a boost to the regions research capacity in areas such as data analytics and economic forecasting
  • Developing international research partnerships to facilitate international comparative analysis and maximise economies of scale and scope for research funding and outputs.
  • Translating high level academic reports into practical and useful policy recommendations for practitioners, alongside longer-term intelligence and research papers. 

Research themes

City-REDI’s research agenda has a city-region focus which is structured around the five foundations of the Industrial Strategy.

We see the generation of new ideas as essential for creative, successful and resilient regions.
We are focussed on creating successful places through people.
We see the role of infrastructure as an essential component of place-based growth and prosperity.
We help policymakers understand the impact business has on a region to shape growth policy.
We are focussed on places and how key policies come together in a locality.
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from City-REDI.