Celebrating our success

Growing tree branch against a blue skySince I joined the Observatory I’m more aware of what is said about the West Midlands.

On 3rd June I attended the conference Skills and Knowledge for Sustainable Communities in London and was very pleased to find that one of the case studies mentioned related to the regeneration of Attwood Green in Birmingham.

I think it is nice to get recognition from other regions, but I believe it is even nicer to deliver valuable learning from the work done in our region.

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Observatory presents integrated policy model at key seminar

The Observatory presented its Integrated Policy Model to delegates at the third ESRC Complex Systems Research Seminar at Cranfield School of Management on 10th June 2009.

The seminar, Modelling for Policy Decisions, was organised by the London School of Economics Complexity Research Centre. The event featured presentations from leading academics on the importance of understanding the complex and dynamic interdependencies between factors.

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Sandwell Health’s Other Economic Summit

SHOES7 logoWhen: 9th & 10th July 2009
Where: The pUBLIC, West Bromwich
How much: £50
More info: Download flyer (PDF, 95kb)

In the tradition of Sandwell Health’s Other Economic Summit (SHOES), this event will be examining how local issues can impact on world health and how global issues affect us.

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Life sciences sector: tell the Government what it can do to help you succeed

MedilinkWMUntil the end of June 2009, West Midlands life sciences companies have an unprecedented opportunity to tell the Government what it can do to help them succeed, as medical and healthcare industry specialist MedilinkWM launches the Voices of Industry Campaign.

Designed to give companies in the Life Sciences sector a united voice and combined influence, the Voices of Industry Campaign aims to deliver a proposal of crucial initiatives that the Government could implement to make an immediate impact on the prosperity of the sector.

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Using height layers and aerial photography to visualise developments and land use

Infoterra an EADS Astrium companyMembers of the Pan Government Agreement (PGA2) including Advantage West Midlands and other Regional Development Agencies, DEFRA, Natural England and Communities and Local Government have signed up for access to national layers of aerial photography and height layers from The Next Perspectives Consortium led by Infoterra UK Ltd.

Available to download (and for PGA licensed organisations), these layers can be used for a whole host of applications in supporting the work of the organisations. We hope this brief article exemplifies how other government departments are using the information and will provide some ideas on how to best exploit the data.
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Shropshire electoral review using ArcGIS

Shropshire CouncilWhat are electoral reviews and why do one?

Electoral reviews are undertaken periodically and their main aim is to ensure that ‘electoral equality’ is maintained, meaning that all councillors in a single authority represent approximately the same number of electors.

Reviews are needed if there has been a lot of new development in an area which results in an increase in the numbers of electors or (as in the case of Shropshire) if a new authority is formed which has a different number of councillors, to ensure there are fair arrangements in place for the first elections to the new authority.

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Breaking out of the silo – a case study

Improvement and Development Agency logoThe West Midlands Regional Observatory is an excellent example of cross-organisation and cross-departmental working, according to a recent case study by the Improvement & Development Agency (I&DeA).

According to the study, the Observatory is a rich resource providing information, knowledge and expertise to a range of audiences.

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