02 Mar 2017
Modern universities have long made significant contributions to their communities. Through collaborations with business and industry, public services and local government, as employers and major organisations, they are key drivers of economic activity, innovation, social mobility and community cohesion. These universities are global players but their local roles and activities are vital for both the industrial strategy which the government is seeking to promote in the UK and for its devolution agenda in England.
As set out in this report, devolution has been a series of initiatives which have proceeded at different paces with varying levels of stakeholder buy-in and, arguably, an inconsistent policy framework. As a result, devolution in England is more akin to a patchwork quilt, albeit with large areas of the country excluded, that has yet to be fitted into a coherent pattern.