“Whether it’s working with our higher education institutions to expand training and skills development opportunities or working with the private sector to drive inward investment in innovation in Greater Manchester, in coming together as a collective, we can be more than the sum of our parts.

“Celebrating the first year of the civic university agreement allows us to reflect on what we have achieved so far, to look to the future and to set ourselves bold ambitions to help make Greater Manchester the best place to grow, progress and grow old.

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “Greater Manchester is proud to be home to world-class universities which make a huge contribution to our region. The Civic Universities Agreement recognizes their essential role as anchor institutions, while defining their responsibilities to our city-region beyond teaching and research.

“One year after signing this historic agreement, we are beginning to see the benefits that closer collaboration can bring. Our universities will continue to conduct groundbreaking research, provide people with valuable skills and foster innovation and entrepreneurship, while ensuring that this contribution benefits everyone in Greater Manchester.

Cllr Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council and GMCA Portfolio Manager for Economics, Business and International, said: “The universities of Greater Manchester play a fundamental role in our society and economy. Their teaching and research draw tens of thousands of people to our city-region each year, and universities also support businesses, drive economic growth and play an important role in communities.

“The Civic Universities Agreement formally sets out the priorities we share and the contribution that universities can make as we seek to create a fairer, greener and more prosperous city-region. With this agreement now established, we look forward to strengthening our collaboration and realizing the collective potential we have to make a positive impact.

“Through their support of initiatives such as Innovation Greater Manchester and Open SME, and by becoming living wage employers, universities are helping us shape the economy of the city-region to deliver the right kind of growth. .”

The institutions are closely involved in the development of Innovation Greater Manchester – the business-led partnership that brings together the private sector, local and national government and academia to drive the growth of the city-region’s innovation ecosystem . The government subsequently committed to creating innovation accelerators, including one focused on Greater Manchester and Innovation Greater Manchester, in the Leveling Up white paper.

And Open SME demonstrates this collaborative commitment to working together to drive inclusive growth in the city region. This scheme, which brings together Greater Manchester Business Schools, the Combined Authority and the Business Growth Hub, is an online support program designed to help small and medium-sized businesses in the city region grow and grow .

All five higher education institutions in the city area are now real living wage employers, paving the way for them to become supporters and members of the Greater Manchester Good Jobs Charter, which was another commitment in the agreement of the civic university.

The Civic University Agreement itself has been developed in direct response to feedback from residents of Greater Manchester and to mark the first anniversary of the agreement, a new Civic University Citizens Panel has been launched to provide a civic engagement forum between universities and members. audiences throughout the city area.

People from across Greater Manchester, but with a strong focus on those from underrepresented groups, will be invited to be part of the panel where they will feed directly into the universities’ work on their civic priorities.

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