Knowledge Economy & Spatial Strategy

Briefings and opinion pieces collected around key Greater Exeter development topics

Knowledge economy

A series of articles assessing Exeter's capacity for significant knowledge economy growth

The Future of the Professions in Exeter

How will artificial intelligence & automation affect the local economy?

Some studies predict massive job losses caused by new technologies while others emphasise their potential to create new forms of employment. We examine their likely regional impact in detail.

3 minute read

Housing Knowledge Economy Key Workers

Three options to help meet Exeter's human resource needs

Recent development patterns have failed to supply needed affordable private housing in central Exeter. We explore a low-cost strategy that combines a range of tenure models suited to answering this challenge.

3 minute read

Spatial strategy

A series of articles considering Exeter's strategic spatial options

Streets are for People

Transforming Exeter City Centre


Cars adversely affect economic output, air quality and wellbeing, take up valuable space when parked and discourage people from walking and cycling when driven. Reducing their use would enhance Exeter's retail and leisure offer, improve public health and attract needed workers to the city.

3 minute read

Exeter St James Regeneration

The right kind of housing in the right place


How can the supply of low-cost, incrementally investable city centre accommodation be stimulated to attract and retain creative, technically-skilled young entrepreneurial talent?

3 minute read

Indie Exeter I

Independent Shops in Exeter

Property development in Exeter city centre is routinely displacing independent shops, creating significant risk and cost for affected businesses. Recent casualties include The Real Food Store, Hyde+Seek and The Exeter Barber Shop, which will soon have to move for the second time in three years. Is Exeter a good place to start a small retail business?

3 minute read

Contested Geographies I

A Short History of SW Regional Governance

The decades leading to the 2010 coalition government saw the UK become one of the most centralised democracies in the developed world. Unelected Local Enterprise Partnerships then replaced Labour's Regional Development Agencies, increasing the democratic deficit and leaving the low density South West at structural financial disadvantage.

3 minute read

Indie Exeter II

Independent Food & Drink in Exeter

Princesshay and Queen Street dining offer 21 food and drink outlets between them, all of them chains. A fortnight after further Guildhall development was recently announced, locally-owned Urban Burger was offered for sale at less than £100,000 after twelve years of trading. Would the city's culinary culture benefit from more independent restaurants?

3 minute read

Contested Geographies II

A Short History of SW Regional Strategy

The Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership that emerged from the 2010 scramble to replace the Regional Development Agency has struggled for strategic relevance. Sub-regional authorities have since formed more appropriate ad hoc development strategy groupings that coincide with functional market areas.

3 minute read

Contested Geographies III

A Short History of SW Regional Branding

Stalled South West devolution has allowed organisations to propose arbitrary spatial frames that suit their competing regional leadership agendas. The resulting confusion of brands has in turn allowed policy-makers to outline super-regional strategies that overlook distinct place-based development needs without improving public funding prospects.

3 minute read

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