Category: Thought Leadership

‘Connectivity’ is one of CCR’s four strategic goals, and in our last feature, we explained why it’s so important for everyone. So what are we doing to make it happen across South East Wales? We’re doing a huge amount, as you’re about to discover …
For more than a century, Ebbw Vale was synonymous with a leading-edge material that shaped the whole world. The wonder known as ‘Steel’ defined this town - with the largest steelworks in Europe producing many millions of tonnes of the super-strong and supremely adaptable material that built the infrastructure of the world we still live in today.
‘Connectivity’ is one of CCR’s four strategic goals. But why is it so important? And what are we doing to make it happen? This first feature in a new series explains why Connectivity is simply critical to our Region - and the world ….
‘Innovation’ is a key pillar of the CCR. Alongside Connectivity, Sustainability and Inclusion, it’s core to everything we do. But what is ‘Innovation’? What are its key characteristics? And how do we compare with other regions and countries as an ‘innovator’? This feature scopes the bigger innovation picture and gives a perspective to CCR’s own #InnovationInAction ….
I’ve always been of the view that a more efficient and effective public sector relies upon not sticking to the practices that achieve little impact but keep us safe – but pushing for the kind of innovative practices that make things work better for the communities we serve. All organisations whether in the public, private or community sectors need people to understand and take measured and considered risks. If everyone was to conform to practices that don’t really work or make a difference but keep us safe and refuse to take risk – then progress would be very unlikely.
The move towards a Green Economy, targeting zero emissions by 2050, is fast changing the way people work and live across the UK. With a significant percentage of decarbonisation needed to be achieved by the end of this decade, the pace of transformation will be monumental for all and potentially bewildering to many. Leigh Hughes, CSR Director of Bouygues Construction in the UK and CCR Chair of the Regional Skills Partnership, is concerned that the scale of change may confuse people and mean that we miss the opportunities ahead, for skills and life in general.
Nine months ago, we interviewed Philippa Marsden to find out how Caerphilly Borough County was managing at the height of the pandemic - and explored Philippa’s own vision for building back better, through a re-imagined high street, a regenerated community and re-purposed borough focused on creating an inclusive prosperity. Philippa’s commitment to her role and passion towards her community shone through - and with her recent appointment to Deputy Chair of the CCR Regional Cabinet, we thought it an opportune time to revisit the conversation and hear Philippa’s latest thoughts on Caerphilly and also on the Region….
When Richard John became the newly-elected Leader of Monmouthshire County Council in May this year, he became a key custodian of a County that many regard as one of the most beautiful in Wales (and the UK) - an area that contains the Black Mountains, Wye Valley and many historical monuments within its borders. It’s also home to c.95,000 people living across a largely rural county that includes towns such as Abergavenny, Caldicot, Chepstow, Monmouth, and Usk. We spoke with Richard about the key drivers that motivate him - and his future hopes and ambitions for a unique county and a fast-evolving region ...
The Vale of Glamorgan’s towns, villages and rural areas are home to more than 130,000 people – a geography that combines extremes of wealth and poverty; and a blend of ‘old’ and the ‘new’ economies.

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