NWBLT CEO’s May Update is Out Now



Last month we were hosted in the House of Commons by Sir Graham Brady at a lunch for North West MPs sponsored by Siemens and Peel Holdings. Our discussion focused upon how businesses and our North West MPs can work together to drive up our region’s innovation and productivity. Robert Hough, Chairman of Peel Airports, provided his unique insight into the importance of business responsibility and partnership working. That partnership work runs throughout this update, and has perhaps never been more important for the future of our economy.


The evaluation of the NWBLT supported My Planet project has now been completed by Z-Arts – for the video and report click here.  The University of Liverpool will present the findings at a small conference on the 6th June at Z-Arts – “Symposium on Creativity and Education”. Also present will be the Director North of Arts Council England, the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, the Cultural Learning Alliance and the Special Projects Director for the Durham Commission that is currently examining how to encourage greater creativity in education. Webster Primary School teachers and children will also be involved.  If anyone would like to attend this event please contact the NWBLT office.


We are in the process of updating our Essential Resources thought leadership report and are working with Creative Concern to engage with regional stakeholders on this important topic. NWBLT plan to launch our updated Essential Resources document in Liverpool at the International Business Festival 2018 in June and look forward to continuing our leading role in influencing regional environmental policy.


The NWBLT’s key focus this year will be the development of the new North West ‘Be the Business’ pilot. Led by the national productivity group, we are seeking to launch a network of family run businesses that will work together as a test bed for learning that can then be scaled up nationally.

Work has continued to develop the North West Digital Adoption Pilot proposal to support manufacturing SMEs in the region. This has been a great example of how we can support sub regional public sector partners.  We are hopeful of a positive announcement soon.


Our joint research project with Innovate UK that has sought to focus on mapping the relationship between and R&D funding and productivity in the region will be published later this month. The steering group that has helped to guide the project which includes representation from our LEPs will help to make recommendations regarding next steps.

NWBLT have agreed to develop a Memorandum of Understanding with Innovate UK that will map out our planned future activity. We have also developed productive relationship with a number of national organisations including the Royal Society, The Green Alliance and the Bessemer Society.

Another partnership NWBLT has developed recently is with the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).  We jointly hosted a business fringe roundtable at the Cyber-UK Conference with NCSC in Manchester last month– for more information click here. As a result we have been asked to reconvene the group to discuss specific challenges and opportunities associated this emerging and growing sector in the region.


NWBLT organised a very interesting BREXIT Breakfast briefing at PwC in Manchester.  The roundtable focussed upon the practical steps that businesses large and small should be thinking about as a matter of urgency. One of the outcomes from this event is a checklist of actions which is being pulled together with partners – more information will be issued about this over the coming months.