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Partridge

Alison

Partridge

Validated Lead Expert

Generic Skills

B.1. Understanding of integrated and sustainable urban development: 
I am director of Aurora European Services (www.aurora-ltd.eu), which supports organisations to improve economic development policies and practices by participating in EU programmes and projects. My thematic expertise lies in entrepreneurship, human capital, enterprise and economic development. For URBACT II, I was lead expert of ESIMeC which explored innovative approaches to sustainable economic recovery and resilience; thematic expert of URBACT Markets & coordinator of the More Jobs Better Cities capitalisation work (2012/13) and the Job Generation capitalisation work (2014/15) as well as playing a lead role in the URBACT Summer University and National Training Scheme. After graduating with a European Studies Degree and undertaking a Robert Schumann Scholarship at the European Parliament, I have worked with EU programmes and projects since 1992. Throughout this time, I have focused on supporting (medium sized) cities to develop and deliver sustainable solutions to urban challenges. I have worked in a wide range of thematic areas and recently I have specialised in employment, human capital, enterprise, innovation and entrepreneurship, and economic development in cities, as I believe that people are a city's main asset. The length and breadth of my experience in other urban development themes have helped me to understand the relevance and importance of an integrated approach, which integrates smart, sustainable and inclusive priorities and actions.
B1. Assessment: 
1=validated
B.2. Understanding of exchange and learning processes at transnational level: 
I have extensive experience of facilitating exchange and learning at transnational level having worked in cross border, inter regional and transnational exchange projects since the early 1990's when I was involved in developing the first Ireland-UK cross border programme. Since then my transnational project experience has spanned numerous EU programmes. For URBACT I was Lead Expert of ESIMeC on economic recovery and resilience in medium sized cities 2010-2015 and Thematic Expert of URBACT Markets 2013-2015 as well as carrying out a number of roles at programme level (Capitalisation workstream coordinator 2012/13 - Jobs and Growth and 2014/15 - Jobs for Urban Youth; Summer University Lab Manager; National Training Scheme and others). Other transnational experien
B2. Assessment: 
1=validated
B.3. Proficiency in English: 
English is my mother tongue and I pride myself on my ability to communicate complex information and messages to all audiences in an accessible and understandable way – both oral and written. I have extensive experience of speaking at international conferences and events and of delivering written outputs for a pan European audience.
B3. Assessment: 
1=validated

Expertise for the design and delivery of transnational exchange and learning activities:

C.3.1. Ability to communicate complex concepts to non-English speakers: 
Having lived abroad at various points I am aware how frustrating it can be when you are not able to communicate or understand effectively. When working with a non-native audience, it is important to use simple and highly visual communication tools. The challenge is to maintain a rigorous approach and retain often-sophisticated messages whilst communicating in an accessible way. Examples of where I have done this include: • Info Graphic Posters developed and used as part of the Job Generation Capitalisation work for URBACT • GreenFit INTERREG A project (Channel Programme) - Web-based good practice guide and toolkit using a 'virtual' business park to guide users around the project findings which are presented through text, powerpoint and video interviews) (www.greenfitproject.eu) • GROW DVD which combined web-based text and video content on project and programme results using an animated navigation technique (using a revolving triangle to help the user find their way around the people-planet-profit themes) (website no longer live as Lead Partner was dissolved) • CLIQ-Vision - animation about boosting local innovation through the quadruple helix (with Sally Kneeshaw - we wrote the specification and worked with the animation team through to delivery)(www.cliqproject.eu)
C3.1 Assessment: 
1=validated
C.3.2. Ability to draw out, support the verbalization and documentation of knowledge and practice from participants: 
Examples include: In addition in ESIMeC (www.urbact.eu/esimec) at each of the transnational events we did a mini peer review where the host partner would present their emerging LAP and then share a list of key challenges with the other partners (at a virtual meeting in advance of the main event). At the meeting partner cities and their ULSG members worked with local ULSG members in small groups to discuss the challenges and explore whether solutions and approaches which had been used in other cities were relevant to the specific local context. The host partner was left with a clear list of options and recommendations for next steps based on the knowledge and practice of other city partners. The thematic learning was written up as a 'recipe' which highlighted knowledge and practice and its relevance to partner (and other) cities tackling similar challenges. In CLIQ (INTERREG IVC) we used a slightly different approach in recognition of the size and nature of the partnership - there were 17 partners from a number of different innovation stakeholders as well as local and regional authorities. Each meeting focused on a different aspect of open innovation and the quadruple helix. Aurora was contracted to facilitate the inter regional exchange which involved meeting design and delivery - and to document the findings through case studies and outward facing meeting summaries. Techniques included collaging, storytelling, roundtables, 'summits' and mini fishbowl sessions (2+2 people).
C3.2 Assessment: 
1=validated
C.3.3. Ability to capture learning for participants to take away: 
The ESIMeC CookBooks and GreenFit Good Practice Guide are recent examples of capturing learning for project participants to take away. The cookbooks present a series of 15 'recipes' for economic recovery, resilience and growth in medium sized cities. Topics range from green growth to entrepreneurship; smart financing to measuring impact. Each recipe follows a common format and includes: • The Occasion - an introduction the European context and policy landscape • Ingredients - a short (shopping) list of things that cities need to develop in the given theme • Utensils - information on how to blend these ingredients together to cook up an effective dish • Good Food Guide listings - information on good practices from within and outside the partnership • Serving tip - more in depth presentation of a practice in one of the partner cities • Cook's tip - a quote from an expert in the field • Takeaway menu - links to more information Recipes were written and published individually throughout the project duration and then brought together into a bound cookbook which included additional project information at the end. http://urbact.eu/esimec-cookbook-ii-skilled-people-tomorrows-economy-more-recipes In GreenFit I used a more conventional approach, writing 'factsheets' to present summary information on the good practices which were discussed at cross border meetings. (www.greenfitproject.eu)
C3.3 Assessment: 
1=validated
C.3.4. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate good practices and policy messages: 
The CLIQ outputs are relevant examples of concise reports that incorporate good practices and policy messages: • The CLIQ ToolKit (A5 printed landscape, 30 pages) provides examples of how to improve performance and cooperation to innovate and includes summary information of activities which are working in the various project sub themes (facilitating citizen inclusion; communicating innovation; supporting access to finance; providing infrastructure and services; developing knowledge and competence; orchestrating activity and formulating policy) as well as 'top tips' for practitioners and policy makers. It is linked to • The CLIQ-o-meter (A5 printed landscape, 9 pages) which aims to allow local government and innovation agencies to assess their current systems and effectiveness in supporting innovation using a simple but sophisticated self assessment and scoring matrix Both at www.cliqproject.eu Another example is the Publication which I co-authored to accompany the INTERREG IVC Thematic Report 'Why reinvent the wheel? Capitalising on regional policy achievements in fostering entrepreneurship (2013)'. This gave a flavour of the full report and tempts readers to want to read more. Quote from Benoit Dalbert, Project Officer at INTERREG IVC "The report and the publication are of great added-value to the INTERREG IVC programme as they conclude with concrete policy recommendations to the attention of local and regional public authorities"
C3.4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Expertise for the design and delivery of transnational exchange and learning activities: 
I have extensive experience of facilitating exchange and learning at transnational level having worked in cross border, inter regional and transnational exchange projects since the early. Since then my transnational project experience has spanned numerous EU programmes. For URBACT I was Lead Expert of ESIMeC on economic recovery and resilience in medium sized cities 2010-2015 and Thematic Expert of URBACT Markets 2013-2015 as well as carrying out a number of roles at programme level (Capitalisation workstream coordinator 2012/13 - Jobs and Growth and 2014/15 - Jobs for Urban Youth; Summer University Lab Manager; National Training Scheme and others). I have also supported inter regional exchange through INTERREG programmes (A, B and C strands). I love designing and facilitating transnational learning and exchange activities and use a range of participative techniques to ensure that they are interactive and fun as well as achieving tangible results. Examples include fishbowl, speed dating, quizzes, musical networking, poster sessions, gallery walks, panel discussions, peer reviews and many more. Quote from Daniel Garnier, Lead Partner of ESIMeC “Alison has proved an invaluable support to the (ESIMeC) project. Her great facilitation skills, her ability to work with people from diverse backgrounds, her creativity and her readiness to always try out new methodologies have contributed greatly to the smooth and successful running of the project”.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; C1 - 3 out of 3, C2 - 4 out of 4, C3 - 4 out of 4.

Thematic expertise:

Theme / Policy: 
Employment, Human Capital and Labour Mobility
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
I graduated from Cardiff University with a BSc (Econ) in Modern European Studies in 1990 and did a Robert Schumann Research Scholarship in the European Parliament the following year. I then immersed myself in European projects and programmes and returned to the UK in 1992 to take up my first role supporting a city (Swansea) and its surrounds with EU projects and programmes in the field of Economic Development, employment, enterprise and entrepreneurship. Since then I have worked in a wide variety of thematic areas and recently I have specialised more in economic development and employment in cities - where European Social Fund meets European Regional Development Fund. I have worked with cities and local and regional authorities from across the EU in employment and human capital projects and programmes. Roles have ranged from project development and delivery (including NOW (1997-99), ADAPT (1998-99) and Mainstream European Social fund (since 1992)) for local authorities in the UK to external expertise for other EU cities and regions (ESIMeC and ESIMeC II URBACT II networks). I have undertaken both empirical and secondary research and contributed to and written a wide range of reports and publications. Recent examples include: • Case study Gävle for the OECD Skills Strategy (2012): "When is a skills strategy not a skills strategy?" (2012) • Job Generation for a Jobless Generation ) http://urbact.eu/sites/default/files/02_jobgen-web.pdf • Various URBACT Tribune Articles
D1 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
The ESIMeC Baseline Studies and the Job Generation State of the Art are relevant examples of input material for transnational learning in URBACT in the theme of employment and human capital.(www.urbact.eu) The Job Generation State of the art, which I co-wrote sets out the current EU programme and policy context for youth employment, explores the work already done by URBACT and other EU funded projects in the theme and sets out some clear recommendations for where URBACT can best focus its efforts in terms of capitalisation work. The ESIMeC baseline (http://urbact.eu/files/esimec-baseline-study) studies set out: • State of the Art on the EU policy and programme context • Partner profiles including demographic, employment and unemployment information on partner cities alongside a commentary on local good practice, priorities, expectations and learning opportunities; • Comparative analysis and clear options and recommendations for a transnational workplan incl
D2 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Examples of concise reports that I have led on and which incorporate learning from exchange and learning activities relevant to the theme of employment and human capital include: Job Generation for a Jobless Generation Publication (http://urbact.eu/sites/default/files/02_jobgen-web.pdf) which I coordinated and wrote for and which included a range of articles on the theme of youth employment including: • Young people and jobs in Europe's cities: What's the problem and what more do we need to know about it? • The youth of our cities: hybrid skills and the changing world of work • Rethinking how to recruit and develop talent • Reaching for the skies: the importance of higher level vocational training • OECD – Job creation and youth employment: why job creation is best achieved at local level • 2015: Let's ensure young people's right to quality employment! • Eurocities and youth employment URBACT ESIMeC Cookbooks - part 1 (2012) and part 2 (2015) which included recipes for success for medium sized cities in a range of themes including: entrepreneurship; education-work transitions; integrated approaches; smart financing; triple helix; green growth; creative and cultural industries; skills forecasting; destination marketing and others. http://urbact.eu/esimec-cookbook-ii-skilled-people-tomorrows-economy-more-recipes More Jobs Better Cities (2012) Report summarising the findings of the URBACT Capitalisation workstream & setting out a framework for city action on jobs.
D3 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
The most relevant examples of my ability to maximise the use of project results for strategic benefits are the two URBACT Capitalisation publications which I have led and co-written: • More Jobs Better Cities (with Mike Campbell, 2012) - A Framework for City Action on Jobs (url above) • Job Generation Special Edition (with Mike Campbell et al, 2015) - What can Cities do to grow jobs for young people (url above) Both present the results of the URBACT capitalisation work around the themes of jobs and employment (for young people in the second example). In each our focus and priority when researching, designing and writing the content was on what would be most useful to city practitioners and policy makers in terms of influencing policy and practice on the ground in cities. The audience is a busy one with scarce time for reading and reflection. With both publications we adopted a practical and pragmatic approach which used evidence and results from URBACT projects and cities to inform a framework of action which could be usefully applied on the ground. We undertook substantial amounts of desk work into what was working and what wasn't in cities and brought together 'thinkers' and 'do-ers' from across the EU in evidence hearings to discuss key questions together. The written word was backed up with a clear strategy for dissemination through blogs and social media and workshops, exhibitions and presentations to national, EU and international conferences.
D4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Thematic expertise: 
I graduated from Cardiff University with a BSc (Econ) in Modern European Studies in 1990 and went on to secure a Robert Schumann Research Scholarship in the European Parliament the following year. I immediately immersed myself in European projects and programmes and returned to the UK in 1992 to take up my first role supporting a city (Swansea) and its surrounds with EU projects and programmes in the field of Economic Development, employment, enterprise and entrepreneurship. Since then I have worked in a wide variety of thematic areas and recently I have specialised more in economic development and employment in cities - where European Social Fund meets European Regional Development Fund. For URBACT II, I was: • Lead expert for ESIMeC I and II which aimed to explore how people and skills could be at the heart of a city's economic recovery, resilience and growth; • Thematic expert for URBACT Markets which aimed to explore the role of markets as drivers of inclusion, economic development and sustainability • Coordinator of 2 capitalisation workstreams: More Jobs-Better Cities (2012) and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation (2015) • Lab manager for employment and human capital at the Dublin Summer University • Trainer in the UK National Training Scheme I also have wide ranging experience working with other EU programmes (particularly INTERREG) and continue to work on the ground on employment and labour market issues in UK cities.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; C1 - 3 out of 3, C2 - 4 out of 4, C3 - 4 out of 4.
Theme / Policy: 
Entrepreneurship and competitive SMEs
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
I graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Modern European Studies in 1990 & secured a Robert Schumann Research Scholarship in the European Parliament the following year. In 1992 I took up my first role supporting a city (Swansea) & its surrounds with EU projects in the field of Economic Development, employment, enterprise and entrepreneurship. Since then I have worked in a wide variety of thematic areas & have specialised in economic development & employment in cities - where ESF meets ERDF, including the themes of SMEs and entrepreneurship. Examples include: leading the first phase of the INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on Entrepreneurship; developing & supporting the delivery of a number of enterprise and entrepreneurship projects in the UK including 'Supply Cross River' (2008-15) (http://supplycrossriver.co.uk) which aimed to open up supply chain & procurement opportunities to small & medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in London, & promote supplier diversity & sustainable procurement to buyers; 'WorkSpace Plus' (2015) which aims to help co-working spaces in London to enhance their offer by providing a comprehensive programme of business support provision to their members / tenants. Both have the ultimate aim of SME development, business growth and job creation. I am a business mentor for the Princes Trust spend 1 day a month supporting vulnerable young people to decide whether entrepreneurship is for them in the first stages of business planning.
D1 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Examples of thematic inputs in this field are the State of the Art for the INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on entrepreneurship & the Baseline Study for the CAPTURE project (INTERREG IIIC). The State of the Art for INTERREG included a summary of the policy and programme context for entrepreneurship at EU & international level & drew on a wide range of research sources. It was used to inform the subsequent project work which resulted in the production of 'project fiches' on each of the INTERREG projects in the entrepreneurship theme which identified good practices which had been transferred. All of this was used to inform a large thematic workshop which brought projects together from all over the EU to exchange experience on what works & what doesn't in entrepreneurship policy and practice - and what regions can learn from INTERREG experience. For CAPTURE (INTERREG IIIC project focused on what regions can do to promote entrepreneurship, business innovation to stimulate knowledge-based companies & help create higher value job) I co-wrote the baseline study which included: • Summary of policy and programme context for innovation & entrepreneurship at EU level • Quantitative and qualitative research into the main challenges faced by Europe's regions promoting SME growth & competitiveness (in this case in knowledge-based companies) • Recommendations for subsequent inter regional event activities Both the URBACT capitalisation publications touched on entrepreneurship.
D2 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Examples of reports that I have (co)written in this theme include: Entrepreneurship Thematic Report (2013) summarising the findings of the INTERREG IVC capitalisation work and including: • Big picture at EU and international level - summary of the policy and programme context for entrepreneurship • Explanation of the challenges faced by European regions when promoting entrepreneurship • Analysis of good practice from INTERREG IVC projects in the theme of entrepreneurship • Options and recommendations on what regions can do to try and use this good practice to meet entrepreneurship challenges (policy and practice) including a list of key messages. Final output for the GROW mini programme (INTERREG IIIC) which brought together 5 relatively high growth regions at different stages of development to explore how to use the People-Planet-Profit pyramid to develop smart growth strategies. The final output was a DVD incorporating video, factsheets on project results and learning of relevance for other EU regions and I supported the partnership to distill learning in the 'smart growth' theme which covered SME development, entrepreneurship and innovation.
D3 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
I led capitalisation workstreams for both URBACT II (More Jobs Better Cities (urbact.eu/more-jobs-better-cities-framework-city-action-jobs) & Job Generation for a Jobless Generation(- http://urbact.eu/sites/default/files/02_jobgen-web.pdf) & INTERREG IVC (Why reinvent the wheel? Capitalising on regional policy achievements in fostering entrepreneurship (2013). My role in these initiatives was to organise, coordinate & lead the work programme; to undertake desk work & primary research with practitioners and policy makers from cities & regions across the EU in order to pinpoint relevant good practice; to design and co-draft the final outputs (reports, powerpoint presentations and other media) & ultimately to ensure that the end products were useful, practical & fit for purpose for a busy audience. The written word was backed up with a clear strategy for dissemination through blogs and social media & workshops, exhibitions & presentations to national, EU & international conferences. Quote from Nicholas Singer, Senior Project Officer at INTERREG IVC "Alison led the first phase of our INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on entrepreneurship. Throughout the process she was constructive and creative in terms of content and rigorous in terms of process and results. .....The Thematic Workshop ..was a highlight - participants exchanged experiences and learnt from each other in a fun stimulating environment and the feedback was incredibly positive. All in all a job well done".
D4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Thematic expertise: 
For URBACT II, I was: • Lead expert for ESIMeC I and II which aimed to explore how people and skills could be at the heart of a city's economic recovery, resilience and growth; • Thematic expert for URBACT Markets which aimed to explore the role of markets as drivers of inclusion, economic development and sustainability • Coordinator of 2 capitalisation workstreams: More Jobs-Better Cities (2012) and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation (2015) both of which explored the importance of entrepreneurship and SMEs to jobs and growth in cities • Lab manager for employment and human capital at the Dublin Summer University • Trainer in the UK National Training Scheme Other examples include: leading the first phase of the INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on Entrepreneurship; developing & supporting the delivery of a number of enterprise & entrepreneurship projects in the UK including 'Supply Cross River' (2008-15)( supplycrossriver.co.uk) which aimed to open up supply chain & procurement opportunities to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in London, & promote supplier diversity & sustainable procurement to buyers; 'WorkSpace Plus' (2015) which aims to help co-working spaces in London to enhance their offer by providing a comprehensive programme of business support provision to their members / tenants. Both of these support SME development, business growth & job creation. I am a business mentor for the Princes Trust supporting young people into entrepreneurship.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; 4 out of 4.
Theme / Policy: 
Local Economic Development
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
I graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Modern European Studies in 1990 and did a Robert Schumann Research Scholarship in the European Parliament the following year. In 1992 I took up my first role supporting a city (Swansea) & its surrounds with EU projects in the field of Economic Development, employment, enterprise & entrepreneurship. Since then I have worked in a wide variety of thematic areas & have specialised in economic development & employment in cities - where ESF meets ERDF. Throughout my career I have worked with - and often been based in - city economic development offices. My consultancy work with Cross River Partnership in London (a partnership of local authorities, Business Improvement Districts and other economic development stakeholders) is a good example. Since 1999 I have supported them to develop and deliver economic development projects funded through ERDF. A good example is Supply Cross River (http://supplycrossriver.co.uk) which aims to open up supply chain & procurement opportunities to SMEs in Central London. Another good example is the work I did for SEEDA (South East of England Development Agency) where I was Contract Manager for a large INTERREG III Mini Programme (GROW) which aimed to support Smart Growth in 5 European Regions using the people-planet-profit principles. My roles as ESIMeC lead expert & coordinator of the capitalisation workstreams More Jobs Better cities and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation are relevant.
D1 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
For More Jobs Better Cities (URBACT II capitalisation workstream), I co wrote the state of the art on the local economic development, jobs and growth agenda in Europe's cities which included: • Lessons from ESPON and URBACT • Reflections on European Commission reports including 'Cities of Tomorrow', 'State of the Cities’, 'Cohesion Reports', EU2020 flagship initiatives • OECD LEED work on local economic development and job creation and OECD Regional Economic Studies • Lessons from the US and particularly Ed Glaeser and Richard Florida's work on the importance of cities For CAPTURE (INTERREG III project focused on what regions can do to promote business innovation to stimulate knowledge-based companies and help generate economic growth) I co-wrote the baseline study which included: • Summary of policy and programme context for innovation and entrepreneurship at EU level • Quantitative and qualitative research into the main challenges faced by Europe's regions promoting economic development and competitiveness (in this case in knowledge-based companies) • Recommendations for subsequent inter regional events and activities Whilst very different, these reports (combined other experience) means that I have a firm grasp on local economic development issues in the EU. Added to this I continue to work on the ground in economic development in London which helps me to understand the realities of local policy and practice.
D2 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Reports that I have led on & which incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities relevant to this theme include: More Jobs Better Cities - A framework for City Action on Jobs (URBACT, 2013) which: • Outlined the key challenges faced by cities in terms of local economic development & job creation • Set out a framework for action which integrates the economic growth & development & labour market agendas & demonstrated the importance of connections, intelligence & governance • Aimed to demonstrate that local economic development policy & practice in Europe's cities CAN make a difference in terms of jobs and growth. http://urbact.eu/more-jobs-better-cities-framework-city-action-jobs Job Generation for a Jobless Generation Publication (URBACT II 2015) which I coordinated & wrote for and which included a range of articles on the theme of local economic development & indeed concluded that cities need to 'youth proof' their local economic development strategies in order to effectively generate new employment opportunities. http://urbact.eu/sites/default/files/02_jobgen-web.pdf ESIMeC Cookbooks - part 1 (2012) & 2 (2015) which included 'recipes for success' on a wide range of local economic development topics: municipality-university-business cooperation (triple helix); green economy; cultural & creative economy; smart financing for economic development & destination marketing http://urbact.eu/esimec-cookbook-fresh-recipes-workforce-development
D3 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Relevant examples of my ability to maximise the use of project results for strategic benefits in the theme of local economic development are the two URBACT Capitalisation publications which I have led and co-written: • More Jobs Better Cities (with Mike Campbell, 2012) - A Framework for City Action on Jobs (URL above) • Job Generation Special Edition (with Mike Campbell et al, 2015) - What can Cities do to grow jobs for young people (URL above) Both present the results of the URBACT capitalisation work around the themes of economic development and employment (for young people in the second example). In each our focus & priority when researching, designing and writing the content was on what would be most useful to city practitioners and policy makers in terms of influencing policy and practice on the ground in cities. The audience is a busy one with scarce time for reading and reflection. With both publications we adopted a practical and pragmatic approach which used evidence and results from URBACT projects & cities to inform a framework of action which could be usefully applied on the ground. We undertook substantial amounts of desk work into what was working and what wasn't in cities and brought together 'thinkers' and 'do-ers' from across the EU in evidence hearings to discuss key questions together. Both these reports emphasise the importance of a 'whole system approach' that integrates entrepreneurship, enterprise, education, employment & economic angles.
D4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Thematic expertise: 
For URBACT II, I was: • Lead expert for ESIMeC I and II which aimed to explore how people and skills could be at the heart of a city's economic recovery, resilience and growth; • Thematic expert for URBACT Markets which aimed to explore the role of markets as drivers of inclusion, economic development and sustainability • Coordinator of 2 capitalisation workstreams: More Jobs-Better Cities (2012) and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation (2015) both of which explored the importance of joining up economioc and employment agendas in Europe's cities • Lab manager for employment and human capital at the Dublin Summer University • Trainer in the UK National Training Scheme Other examples include: leading the first phase of the INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on Entrepreneurship; developing and supporting the delivery of a number of local economic development projects in the UK including 'Supply Cross River' (2008-15) which aimed to open up supply chain and procurement opportunities to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in London, and promote supplier diversity and sustainable procurement to buyers; 'WorkSpace Plus' (2015) which aims to help co-working spaces in London to enhance their offer by providing a comprehensive programme of business support provision to their members / tenants. Both of these have the ultimate aim of business growth, job creation and local economic development.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; 4 out of 4.
Theme / Policy: 
Research, Innovation and Knowledge Economy
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
I graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Modern European Studies in 1990 and secured a Robert Schumann Research Scholarship in the European Parliament the following year. In 1992 I took up my first role supporting a city (Swansea) and its surrounds with EU projects in the field of Economic Development, employment, enterprise and entrepreneurship. Since then I have worked in a wide variety of thematic areas and have specialised in economic development and employment in cities - where ESF meets ERDF, including the themes of research, innovation and the knowledge economy. Examples include: development and delivery of technology transfer projects and graduate retention projects in Industrial South Wales (1992-1996 – ESF and ERDF - Objective 2, 3 and 4); development and delivery of CAPTURE (INTERREG IIIC 2004-2007) which aimed to explore how Europe’s regions could more effectively grow the knowledge economy in order to grow jobs and contribute to competitiveness; development and delivery of CLIQ (INTERREG IVC 2008-2012 - www.cliqproject.eu) which looked at how to create local innovation (and knowledge based jobs) through the Quadruple Helix. In URBACT, the Job Generation capitalisation workstream was delivered alongside one, which focused on New Urban Economies. As coordinator of the former, I looked at opportunities for young people in ‘new’ sectors including knowledge-based and digital economies, including a contribution to the New Urban Economies publication.
D1 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
As External Expert to the INTERREG IVC CLIQ project (Creating Local Innovation through the Quadruple Helix - www.cliqproject.eu) I co-edited almost 30 case studies relating to local and open innovation. Subjects included: • Innovation Pole of Crete: Enhancement of the relation between QH actors to increase local innovation and competitiveness. (Crete) • Ulm Science City: A Classic Triple Helix with a Quadruple Helix Sustainability Approach. • Open Innovators for the Future: Combining student excellence with social responsibility. (Leeuwarden) • How Central Catalonia developed an implantation strategy for its innovation system. (Catalonia) • User-driven development of the city and its services (Mikkeli) • Living Lab - a Real Life Quadruple Helix? (Jyväskylä) • Incubation Methodologies, Dynamic Collaborative Innovation. (Beira Atlantic) • Super Incubation (Sussex) The case studies were widely used in inter regional events and study visits. For CAPTURE (INTERREG III project focused on what regions can do to promote business innovation to stimulate knowledge-based companies) I co-wrote the baseline study which included: • Summary of policy and programme knowledge economy context and definition • Research into the main challenges faced by Europe's regions promoting economic development and competitiveness (in this case in knowledge-based companies) • Recommendations for subsequent inter regional events and activities
D2 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
The CLIQ outputs (INTERREG IVC) are examples of concise reports that incorporate good practices & policy messages in the theme of innovation & the knowledge economy. I co-designed & authored both of these (with Sally Kneeshaw): • CLIQ ToolKit (A5 printed landscape, 30P) provides examples of how to improve performance and cooperation to innovate and includes summary information of activities which are working in the various project sub themes (facilitating citizen inclusion; communicating innovation; supporting access to finance; providing infrastructure and services; developing knowledge and competence; orchestrating activity and formulating policy) as well as 'top tips' for practitioners and policy makers. It is linked to • CLIQ-o-meter (A5 printed landscape, 9P) which aims to allow local government and innovation agencies to assess their current systems and effectiveness in supporting innovation using a simple but sophisticated self assessment and scoring matrix Both at www.cliqproject.eu For CAPTURE (INTERREG IIIC - Knowledge Economy) I was involved in the design and content for various dissemination outputs including: • A short video where partners presented their take on the benefits of the knowledge economy • A 16 page leaflet which provided a definition of the knowledge economy, explored the challenges faced by Europe's medium sized cities, offered some 'top tips' for stimulating the knowledge economy and presented a number of examples of good practice
D3 Assessment: 
1=validated
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
I have organised a large number of final project events and used innovative methodologies to present complex results. At the CLIQ final event the project team performed a short play to back up project messages on the quadruple helix. This was a challenging but fun way of engaging the audience and disseminating findings. I led relevant capitalisation workstreams for both URBACT II (More Jobs Better Cities (2102) and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation(2015)) and INTERREG IVC (Why reinvent the wheel? Capitalising on regional policy achievements in fostering entrepreneurship (2013)). My role in these initiatives was to organise, coordinate and lead; to undertake desk work and primary research with practitioners and policy makers from cities and regions to pinpoint relevant good practice; to design and co-draft the final outputs (reports, powerpoint presentations and other media) and ultimately to ensure that the end products were useful, practical and fit for purpose for a busy audience. The written word was backed up with a clear strategy for dissemination through blogs and social media and workshops, exhibitions and presentations to national, EU and international conferences. Quote from Nicholas Singer, INTERREG IVC "Alison led the first phase of our INTERREG IVC capitalisation work on entrepreneurship. Throughout the process she was constructive and creative in terms of content and rigorous in terms of process and results..All in all a job well done."
D4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Thematic expertise: 
For URBACT II, I was: • Lead expert for ESIMeC I and II which aimed to explore how people and skills could be at the heart of a city's economic recovery, resilience and growth; • Thematic expert for URBACT Markets which aimed to explore the role of markets as drivers of inclusion, economic development and sustainability • Coordinator of 2 capitalisation workstreams: More Jobs-Better Cities (2012) and Job Generation for a Jobless Generation (2015) both of which explored the importance of joining up economioc and employment agendas in Europe's cities • Lab manager for employment and human capital at the Dublin Summer University • Trainer in the UK National Training Scheme In the Innovation and Knowledge Economy theme I have long term experience of developing and delivering technology transfer projects and graduate retention projects in (Industrial South Wales 1992-1996 – ESF and ERDF - Objective 2, 3 and 4); I was external expert to 2 INTERREG C projects - CAPTURE (INTERREG IIIC 2004-2007) which aimed to explore how Europe’s regions could more effectively grow the knowledge economy in order to grow jobs and contribute to competitiveness; development and delivery of CLIQ (INTERREG IVC 2008-2012) which looked at how to create local innovation (and knowledge based jobs) through the Quadruple Helix.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; 4 out of 4.
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).
Summary Thematic expertise: 
Please provide main highlights concerning experiences related to the specific field of expertise. If the application is validated, only this summary will be visible on the online database.
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
Provide information on your educational and professional background related to the selected topic. Describe the type of activities you have been involved (research, project delivery, teaching, actual contribution to the listed publication, etc.).
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Provide examples of thematic inputs (reports, position papers, briefings etc.) produced to feed in the learning process at transnational level.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
Provide examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers. This can include also productions for online supports (social media, blogs, etc.)Describe your role in the production of the reports.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
Provide examples of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes. Describe your role in the design of the outputs and in the definition of the related dissemination strategy (including digital strategy).

Expertise support to local authorities and other stakeholders in designing & delivering integrated and participatory policies

E.1. Knowledge on participatory methods and tools for co-production and implementation of local polices : 
I have worked for and with local government on local economic development policy since 1992 (initially as a local government officer in Swansea and then London and subsequently as an independent consultant). As a trainer on the URBACT National Training Scheme and Lab Manager at the URBACT Summer University in Dublin, I have trained others in participatory methods and tools for co-production and implementation of local policies. I also supported ESIMeC partners to reach out to different stakeholders in their city - guiding and advising them every step of the way and helping them to deal with local challenges and difficulties. During 2013-14 I worked with Westminster City Council on the co-production of their LAP for URBACT Markets. The markets landscape in central London is complex - with public and private operators, strict regulation and a multifaceted legal and administrative structure. I worked with the LSG to identify common challenges and problems and then to cocreate potential solutions and activities. This included facilitating at a multi stakeholder consultation event which had as one of its core goals the development of effective dialogue with different stakeholder groups. Quote from Susannah Wilks, Cross River Partnership “We have found Aurora to be exceptional amongst consultancies... Their political awareness and sensitivity towards all our stakeholders inspires total confidence”
E.1 Assessment: 
1=validated
E.2. Knowledge on integrated approach for the design, delivering, monitoring and evaluation of urban strategies/policies: 
As Lead Expert of ESIMeC I have used a range of monitoring tools for integrated and sustainable urban policies. These have included the URBACT ULSG and LAP self assessment tools, partner questionnaires and regular phone interviews with city partners. I provided a template and guidance on how to develop a Local Action Plan and supported partners in drafting integrated strategies which met local need. I commented on drafts as they were developed and had regular telephone contact with partners so that they could ask me questions on areas of difficulty and I could help them to retain an integrated approach. One of the key findings of ESIMeC as a whole was the importance of a 'whole system approach' to economic development and employment in medium sized cities - an approach which accounts for the different aspects of sustainable integrated urban development and the goals of EU2020 for inclusive, smart and sustainable growth. In ESIMeC I also developed a 'learning and action points' tool to help partners document the learning from transnational events, consider where it fits within an integrated urban context and particularly within their LAP and specify actions to be delivered. We used this tool effectively at the beginning and end of each transnational event to document and review learning and actions.
E.2 Assessment: 
1=validated, however it is not enough cleart for me that 'learning and action points' is a monitoring tool.
E.3. Awareness of the main policy and funding schemes for sustainable urban development at EU and national level: 
In the UK I am a keen member of the Institute of Economic development and regular participant at public lectures and events on Urban issues at the London School of Economics and Centre for Cities. I regularly attend - and participate in - national, EU and international conferences and events. I am active on Twitter and find it an invaluable source of intelligence and a useful tool for signposting me to up to date information about urban development policies, trends and funds. As I love what I do I read prolifically and have an ability to absorb complex information quickly and meaningfully. At work I regularly need to prepare baseline reports for EU projects which incorporate the 'state of the art' on the project theme. In my project development work I often have to make a case for a given project which requires consideration of external coherence. All of this means I absolutely have to keep abreast of the main policy and funding streams for sustainable urban development at an EU, national and regional level.
E.3 Assessment: 
1=validated
E.4. Ability to understand specific local situations and adapt tools and content to different local realities: 
For 25 years, I have worked with projects involving partners from just about every European Member State. It is essential to be able to quickly understand and adapt to local situations and to be sensitive to local political contexts. The city tour which I did when preparing the ESIMeC baseline study is a relevant example. With the Lead Partner we had 1:1 and group discussions with multiple stakeholders from the 9 city partners. We developed a common script and methodology which was then adapted for different local realities and taking into consideration different levels of experience of sustainable integrated urban development. We used the findings of city visits combined with extensive deskwork to develop a transnational workplan which would ensure consistency in the design and delivery of integrated and participatory policies across all city partners. We used URBACT methods and tools and included a half day 'capacity building' session in each transnational event in the 1st phase of the project to help cities understand how to use these methods on the ground in their own local contexts. Partners were encouraged to critically question how these methods might work in their own contexts and to report back to others on what worked and what didn't with different stakeholder groups. All of this preparation and training helped the partners to develop Local Action Plans which used URBACT learning to address local challenges in an integrated and participatory way.
E.4 Assessment: 
1=validated
Summary Expertise: 
As Lead Expert of ESIMeC I used a range of monitoring tools for integrated and sustainable urban policies. These have included the URBACT ULSG and LAP self assessment tools, partner questionnaires and regular phone interviews with city partners. I provided a template and guidance on how to develop a Local Action Plan and supported partners in drafting integrated strategies which met local need. I commented on drafts as they were developed and had regular telephone contact with partners so that they could ask me questions on areas of difficulty and I could help them to retain an integrated approach. As well as this direct URBACT experience, I have worked with a number of INTERREG A, B and C strand projects and, importantly, also continue to work on the ground supporting local authorities in the UK's cities. Most recently, I have used participative approaches to support Westminster City Council to design and deliver an enterprise programme in the context of the London European Structural and Investment Fund Strategy, the Growth Deal and the London Plan - all of which promote an integrated approach.
Assessment: 
An applicant meet the criteria in excess; 4 out of 4.

Informations

Residence location:
United Kingdom
Languages:
English - Mother tongue
Foreign Languages level: 
Foreign languages: 
Email:
alison@aurora-ltd.eu
Unavailable - already performing the role of Lead Expert for an URBACT network

Area of expertise