Simon Eden

Simon Eden

Simon is a public policy consultant and a Director of the Southern Policy Centre, the think-tank for the central South. Originally from London, Simon began his career as a research biologist before joining the Civil Service, where he worked on local government funding and policy. In 1999 he was appointed Assistant Chief Executive of Southampton City Council and became Director of Sustainability & Development in 2001. In 2003 Simon was appointed Chief Executive of Winchester City Council. He led the Council for 13 years before leaving to become a policy wonk all over again.

Trauma and change: will we do things differently?

Last month, Simon Eden published this blog in collaboration with Green Halo. In his book “The Language of Cities” Deyan Sudjic, Journalist and Director of London’s Design Museum, suggests that: “It takes trauma to make a complacent city invest in its future”. It’s only when a major crisis – from a loss of a key part of the economy to a natural disaster – shakes a place from the conviction it’s doing OK that real, transformative change can happen. The…

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Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Youth Parliament

Recovery from Covid-19: 24 June 2020 As the nation emerges tentatively from lockdown there are many conversations about what recovery may look like: what may change, what have we learnt from months of enforced isolation and behavioural change? Newspapers are full of articles about our ‘new normal’, the BBC has promoted fresh thinking through its “Rethink” series and SPC has stimulated the local debate with our economic recovery seminars, for example. As we have that national debate it’s important that…

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IS THERE A STRATEGY FOR THE CENTRAL SOUTH?

Briefing Note from the Southern Policy Centre Download a copy here. What next for devolution in central southern England With a new devolution White Paper likely to be published soon, it seems Ministers will make devolution to our larger cities and regions part of their planning for economic recovery. In 2019 the Southern Policy Centre explored whether the central South can be seen as a coherent region, analysing the published plans and strategies of LEPs and local authorities, and asking…

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Can Graduates fuel recovery in the central South?

In a report published earlier this month the Resolution Foundation argued that one consequence of economic recession is the challenge those leaving full time education will face in finding jobs.[i] The ‘lockdown’ in response to the threat of the Covid-19 virus is pushing the UK into one of the deepest recessions we have seen for many years,[ii] and the Foundation suggest that up to 640,000 under 25s could face unemployment. The Institute of Student Employers found that by early May…

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Tomorrow’s City Centres. How can we bring our city centres back to life after lockdown?

Before we had even heard of Covid-19 our city centres in the central South – Bournemouth, Poole, Portsmouth, Southampton and Winchester – were already facing some real challenges: declining footfall, shops closing and, of course, competition from internet retailers. The ‘lockdown’ introduced to help us control the virus has made matters even more challenging. Right now our city centres seem empty of life. Before the current crisis, SPC were exploring how our city centres are changing in a project sponsored…

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