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Commonwealth Scholars gather in Cardiff

11 March 2011

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Scholars from across the Commonwealth gather at the University this week to explore effective ways to help drive local economic prosperity.

Hosted by the School of City and Regional Planning and Cardiff Business School, the Commonwealth Local Government Research Colloquium will see researchers share research findings and assess the implications for policy makers and practitioners around the world.

The focus will be around three main themes - Sustainable Governance and Local Democracy, Sustainable Economic Development, and Environmental Sustainability. Twenty scholars will present papers during the three day Research Colloquium, which runs from 13 – 15 March. The event will be opened by the Leader of Cardiff Council Cllr Rodney Berman and Lucy Slack, the Deputy General Secretary of the Commonwealth Local Government Forum.

Among the experts in local government policy and management attending will be Professor Steve Martin Professor of Public Policy and Management and Director of the Centre for Local & Regional Government Research, based in Cardiff Business School. He will assess the prospects for the UK Coalition Government's proposals to give greater powers to local communities and local councils in England.

Alison Brown a reader in the School of City and Regional Planning will present a paper about her research in informal economies. Dr Andrew Flynn, also from the School of City and Regional Planning, who will be presenting on climate change adaptation in Wales, specifically looking at governance and scale.

Conclusions of the colloquium, which takes place every two years, will feed into the Commonwealth Local Government Conference which takes place between 15 and 18 March in Cardiff’s City Hall. Expected to attract in the region of 400 Ministers, senior politicians, local government leaders and business leaders from around the world, the theme is Energising Local Economies; Partnerships for Prosperous Communities. Among the keynote speakers are Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Hon Kamla Persad-Bissessar, First Minister for Wales, the Rt Hon Carwyn Jones, the Rt Hon Helen Clark the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, and Dame Margaret Eaton, Chairman, Local Government Association of England and Wales

Professor Martin said: "Local government in many countries has a growing responsibility to support and promote local economic development. We are honoured to have been chosen by the Forum to host the Research Colloquium. It really will bring together some of the best minds to discuss the conference theme, exchange information, and develop ideas on key directions for local government research across the Commonwealth."

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