CCRI’s researchers Bryonny Goodwin-Hawkins and Amr Khafagy will be convening a NICRE-themed special session at the Regional Studies Association’s ‘Regions in Recovery’ online conference in June.

The conference is a research-led celebration of thinking about our regions and cities in a time of great crisis and change. The word Festival illustrates that the event takes place over several weeks, accommodating the work of many researchers and policymakers along with an optional social and well-being programme. The collective goal is to bring together an inclusive community to share research thoughts and to network.

Designed as a collaborative programme with a collegiate spirit in mind, the Festival seeks to maximise the value of a virtual event to all participants while managing the costs and risks associated with hosting this kind of event.

Bryonny and Amr are now inviting papers to be submitted for consideration for their session which is entitled Rethinking innovation for resilience and recovery beyond the metropole. Details regarding their session is provided below:

Despite frequent claims that cities are the engines of economic growth, regions are innovative and enterprising beyond the metropole. England’s rural economies, for example, contribute over £250 billion to GDP and match the value of output from the country’s ten leading cities outside London. Unlocking the real potential here remains poorly understood in regional policy, and is often overlooked by urban and high growth centric industrial strategies. These same blind spots risk recurring as governments and regions seek post-pandemic recovery strategies that deliver economic ‘quick wins’.

This special session calls attention to untapped innovation and regional growth potential in rural and peripheral regions, small towns and municipalities, and rural-urban interconnections. We explore how enterprising practices, people, policies and places can promote resilience and aid future adaptation and regional recovery. We invite empirically informed papers that share our non-metropolitan interest and envision policy responses and/or novel mechanisms for inclusive change. Topics of particular interest include:

• Entrepreneurial ecosystems outside cities;
• Innovation policies and ‘levelling up’;
• Innovation and the Foundational Economy; and,
• Enterprising approaches to natural capital.

Full details of all sessions and how to submit abstracts can be found on the Regional Studies Association’s event page. Bryonny and Amr’s session is listed as ‘SS10’.

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