The think tank and policy forum for central southern England

New approaches to long term challenges

Why does central southern England need new focus?

Central southern England stretches broadly from Dorset to West Sussex, and the Isle of Wight to Oxfordshire. The region has had little public policy focus despite facing challenges distinct from both the metropolis and other English regions.

Our public spending per head is low though we face the triple costs of deprived urban areas, rurality and an ageing population.

Average incomes are above the national average but this can mask sharp inequalities and high living costs. Our population is growing with significant migration from other parts of the UK and abroad, but there is a real conflict between the need for housing and the sensitivity of the natural environment.

Economic development, though generally good, is uneven and constrained by shortages of skills, infrastructure and finance. There is a danger that policy makers will become complacent about the unique needs of the region.

What does the SPC contribute?

We’re a cross-party thinktank responding to these distinct challenges and opportunities. We specialise in:

Our Advisory Board brings powerful talents, impressive experience and expert insight to the real world challenges we are committed to tackling.

Above all, our work will always be rooted in practical policy making. We work with leaders in business, government at all levels, and the third sector to make sure our research has a positive impact for southern England.