Northern Economic Summit

  • Thursday, 28 November 2019
  • Central Manchester
  • 09:30 - 16:45
  • Overview

Open Forum Events' annual Northern Economic Summit will support the public and private sectors in building prosperity in Northern England through a programme made-up of innovative, practical ideas and case studies. Delegates will hear from movers-and-shakers, including those providing the services, ideas and finance that the public/private sectors need; including chief economic/scientific/public policy researchers, business leaders, local authorities, central government and international diplomats.       

The Northern Economic Summit will:    

  • Introduce and inform delegates about the many financial support opportunities that are available to start up new businesses or expand existing businesses. 
  • Inform delegates how they can take advantage of market opportunities, including exports markets and the opportunities available through public sector procurement's £200billion annual expenditure. 
  • Engage with regional businesses offering secondments to the public sector; developing cross-sector business and leadership skills as well as building new relationships between regional governance and industry.
  • Demonstrate innovative case studies of local authorities contending with diminishing support grants and innovating to diversify their income generation.
  • Explore in detail some of the major infrastructure investments in transport, construction, and technology; reviewing how they will impact local economies.
  • Support the harnessing of skills and talents in the North.
  • Confirmed Speakers

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  • Event Programme


Registration and Coffee in the Networking Area


Chair's Opening Address


Keynote Address

"The Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy"

The pioneering spirit of Greater Manchester's historic global economic and socially progressive leadership - from the industrial revolution to the women's suffrage movement - is captured in its new Local Industrial Strategy. Mayor of Manchester, Andy Burnham will welcome delegates to the city with a keynote that expands on the global economic and technological changes that the Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy will drive, including:

  • Drive increased private sector investment in supporting research and development of advanced materials and manufacturing.
  • Establishing a top-5 European city region digital economy with full-fibre broadband and 5G network coverage; with internationally-significant media and cyber-security clusters. 
  • Position the region as a global leader in health and care; creating new industries and jobs whilst improving population health and extending life expectancy. 
  • Achieve carbon neutrality by 2038 by decarbonising transport, up-scaling renewable energy assets and increasing the energy efficiency of infrastructure; creating green industries/jobs that capitalise on the city region's research assets and low carbon goods and services sector. 
  • Sarah Davies, Northern Powerhouse Strategic Lead, Environment Agency (confirmed)

Sarah Davies, Lead on the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs' Urban Pioneer project will highlight the interaction between the economy, resilience and environmental sustainability - particularly how our approach to the environment influences and determines international investor appetite as well as maximising local economic and health benefits.

  • Rhys Whalley, Executive Director, Manchester - China Forum (confirmed)
"Connecting the Northern Powerhouse"

Since the inception of the Manchester China Forum in 2013, the region's links with China have grown from strength to strength. Greater Manchester and the broader Northern Powerhouse region have seen a surge in inward investment, Chinese tourists, students and an increase in education collaboration. Some of the recent success can be attributed to Greater Manchester’s strategy prioritising the development of direct air routes between Manchester Airport and China. This keynote speech will introduce Greater Manchester’s approach to developing links with China, highlight recent successes and explore the opportunities for the region looking forward.


Main Sponsor

"Building Prosperous Local Economies"

Oldham became the world's leading economy during the industrial revolution. Since de-industrialisation in the mid-20th century, the borough's economy has naturally contracted. With the development of emerging technologies and the fourth industrial revolution, how can local authorities harness innovation, support new start-ups and existing enterprise?


Panel Discussion


Coffee in the Networking Area

  • Gavin Brown, Associate Professor in Financial Economics, Manchester Metropolitan University (confirmed)
"FinTech, Blockchain and Cryptoassets - A Northern Focus"

Beyond the hype of blockchain what are the benefits that decentralised finance can bring to the Northern economy? Gavin will critically explore case studies drawn from global best-practice that will exhibit the potential of this technological disruption and how this may be better leveraged at both the regional and national levels.


Case Study

"Maximising the Benefits of the North's Knowledge Economy"

The N8 Research Partnership (N8) is the collaborative body for the universities of Durham, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield and York. The N8 universities deliver more than £12 billion of revenue for the North, provides assistance to more than 31,000 businesses and generates in excess of £6.6 billion GVA as well as being responsible for 119,000 jobs in the region. N8 research programmes drive growth of the knowledge-based economy through the development of world-class interdisciplinary, translational research that deliver real world impact. 


Panel Discussion

  • Gavin Brown, Associate Professor in Financial Economics, Manchester Metropolitan University (confirmed)
  • Dr Annette Bramley, Director, N8 Research Partnership (confirmed)

Lunch in the Networking Area


Chair's Afternoon Address


Synopsis coming soon...


Centre for Towns Panel Discussion

Ian Warren, Director, Centre for Towns (confirmed)

Lisa Nandy MP, Member of Parliament for Wigan (confirmed)

Speaker TBC

Speaker TBC

Speaker TBC


Refreshment Break

  • Simon Tse, Chief Executive, Crown Commercial Service (confirmed)
"Using Public Procurement to Invest in the Northern Economy"

The UK public sector spends £200billion a year. Every additional 1% that is spent in the North will represent an economic boost of £6billion due to the knock on the supply chain and local spending. The Crown Commercial Service, which is the leading public sector procurement organisation, will explain how CCS can work more with the wider public sector across the country to help them get value-for-money from their common goods and services procurement.

  • Phillip Cox, Chief Executive, Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership (confirmed)
"Local Enterprise Partnerships"

Local Enterprise Partnerships are collaborative projects between local authorities councils and business established to determine the economic priorities in local areas; driving growth, creating jobs and upskilling the work force. In his keynote, Phillip Cox will discuss how he's leading the Cheshire and Warrington LEP towards becoming a £350bn economy by 2030.  


Case Study


Paul Stowers, Head, UK Regions - North West, Department for International Trade (invited)

"Incentives and Support for Exporters and Those Wishing to Explore International Markets"

This keynote presentation will provide a detailed breakdown from the Department for International Trade of the opportunities, funding and support available to help Northern businesses export.


Panel Discussion

Simon Tse, Chief Executive, Crown Commercial Service (confirmed)

Phillip Cox, Chief Executive, Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership (confirmed)

Paul Stowers, Head, UK Regions - North West, Department for International Trade (invited)


Chair's Closing Remarks and Event Close

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Jonathan Smith

All Delegates

  • Discuss the economic impact of reforms to business rates retention/calculation, transport and infrastructure investment, diversifying local economies and devolution of legislative power.
  • Get new, up-to-date projections for regional growth, commercial trends and emerging industries.
  • Understand how global investment and international partners are supporting the development of local economies in the North.  


Private Sector

  • Learn how to take advantage of the financial grants/opportunities available from local authorities, central government, the European Union, banks and other financial institutions.
  • Hear about opportunities to engage with local government initiatives designed to support business and economic growth.
  • Develop your understanding of how to build a growing, sustainable business.
  • Engage with financial support opportunities that are available to small businesses and startups through local and central government.
  • Hear from experts on how to secure a share of the public sector's £200billion annual procurement spend.
  • Understand how to take advantage of reforms to business rates, transport and infrastructure investment and devolution of legislature.


 Public Sector

  • Take advantage of secondment opportunities in business' driving local economic growth; developing cross-sector leadership skills and adding further nuance and insight into local economic policy and initiatives.   
  • Understand the potential impact of proposed business rates retention/calculation and explore methods of reducing local authorities reliance on them as a source of revenue. 
  • Identify diverse sources of growth funding for local businesses and how they can be accessed.
  • Develop your understanding of local business requirements for economic growth and exporting.   
  • Learn about the support available to local businesses who export and how this can be obtained.         
  • Contact Details
  • Supporters
  • Venue
  • Featured Events
  • Downloads
  • Who will attend

Contact Details



Central Manchester

Central Manchester


Featured Events

  • The Northern Economic Summit

    • 15 November 2018
    • 09:25 - 17:00
    • The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester

Downloads & Resources

  • Open Forum Events Sponsorship Brochure
    Open Forum Events offer a number of partnership, sponsorship and exhibition opportunities that can meet your marketing and business development needs.

who will attend

  • Assistant Director Business
  • Assistant Director's Regeneration
  • Associate Director's
  • Business Development Directors
  • Business Engagement Managers
  • Business Partnerships Managers
  • Cabinet Members
  • CEO's/Founders
  • Chief Economists
  • Chief Executives
  • Chief Financial Directors
  • Commercial Managers
  • Commercial Services Specialists
  • Deputy Directors of Development and Regeneration
  • Directors
  • Directors - Regeneration & Strategy
  • Directors England and Cities
  • Directors Industrial Strategy
  • Directors of Business and Enterprise
  • Directors of Research, Enterprise and Innovation
  • Directors Of Strategic Transformation
  • Directors Strategic Relationship's
  • Economic Analysts
  • Economic Development Funding Managers
  • Economics Associates
  • Executive Directors
  • General Secretaries
  • Growth Generators
  • Head of Infrastructure
  • Head's of Business Engagement
  • Head's of Communications
  • Head's of External Engagement and Capability
  • Head's of IP & Commercialisation
  • Head's of School: Teacher Development
  • International Trade Advisers
  • Investors
  • Inward Investment Officers
  • Knowledge Exchange Support Officers
  • Lecturers
  • Managing Directors
  • Mayors
  • Members of Parliament
  • Ministers
  • Operations Managers
  • Policy Managers
  • Programme Managers
  • Rail freight logistics experts
  • Regional Directors
  • Regional Press
  • Research Partnership Managers
  • Senior Communications Officers
  • Senior Corporate Engagement Officers
  • Senior Lecturers
  • SMEs
  • Social Inclusion Directors
  • Transport Developers