Devolution is changing the way many of our towns and cities are governed and the way in which civic leaders are investing for sustainable economic growth. At the same time continued pressure on public finances means that many local decision-makers are faced with hard choices between alternative investment opportunities.
Competition for scarce resources intensifies the need to make the right investment decisions in a coordinated and transparent way. Good strategic planning will need to integrate longer term economic, spatial and transport planning, within the overall investment context, to develop a programme of activities and expenditure that will drive growth.
Against this background, technological change and in particular automation and digitisation are disrupting the economic landscape, creating even greater uncertainty around economic futures and the right investments for growth. When technological change happens, it is likely to happen quickly. Investment plans will therefore need to be agile to effectively and efficiently respond to change.