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.

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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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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How can the Central South’s city centres successfully survive change?

Living in cities Archaeologists tell us that the world’s first city developed in Mesopotamia, modern-day Iraq, over 6,000 years ago. At the heart of those emerging cities was space for people to meet, trade and worship. The UN has estimated there are now 4,500 cities with populations of over 150,000 in the world, with more than half the world’s populations living in urban areas. The UK Government recognises 64 cities which are each home to more than 125,000 people. The…

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How can central South’s city centres successfully survive change?

Our cities are facing many challenges: expensive and poor quality housing, greater social inequalities and rising crime are regular news topics. Our city centres, once the great gathering points for communities and home to markets, theatres, museums, and public services are now threatened by huge changes in how we shop and spend our leisure time. Blake Morgan wants to understand how cities in the Central South are responding to these challenges and have asked us to explore what the future…

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