How do multi-campus universities contribute to regional development?

Join EPRC Research Associate, Dr Liliana Fonseca at this upcoming workshop “How do multi-campus universities contribute to regional development?” taking place at the University of Glasgow on Tuesday 04 June. Funded by the British Academy, this workshop brings together researchers interested in exploring the regional development role of university campuses in disadvantaged or peripheral regions.

Many universities have a presence in multiple locations, through branch campuses or more distributed structures, often in places that would otherwise be higher education ‘cold spots’. These can be important assets for regional development, but also face distinctive challenges for effective local engagement and impact. Despite the adoption of a Civic University agenda to promote the variety of ways in which institutions support their local economies and communities, there is currently little research on the characteristics of branch or network campuses in the UK, or on their contributions to regional development.

This event aims to develop a research agenda for this area. Expert speakers will share insights from their research and practice, and participants will have the opportunity to exchange disciplinary perspectives on this issue, and to make links with other researchers. One outcome will be to establish a collaborative research network to take forward future research opportunities and knowledge exchange activity with universities and their regional partners.

While the event is aimed at Early Career Researchers, it is open to all researchers with interests in regional development or higher education. It may also be of interest to those working in universities’ policy or practice related to civic mission or engagement activity. All are welcome.


Event Programme:

10.45-11.00: Refreshments and Registration

11.00-11.15: Introduction and Overview of event and its purpose.

11.15-12.00: Overview of existing research and practice from key speakers

12.00-12.45: Small Group Discussions (45 minutes): Each group assigned to a specific question or theme. Rotate participants to different groups after a set time.

12.45-1.30 Lunch

1.30-2.00 Harvesting Insights: Each group to summarise key insights and ideas; feedback to be captured for the whole workshop

2.00-2.30: Plenary Discussion and Synthesis: Identification of common themes and challenges. Discuss any divergent perspectives and seek areas of consensus.

2.30-2.45: Action Planning; Discussion on potential actions or next steps to advance the research and knowledge exchange agenda.

2.45-3.00: Refreshments and networking.



Professor David Charles is Professor of Enterprise and Innovation at Northumbria University and was founding director of the Northumbria Centre for Innovation, Regional Transformation and Entrepreneurship (iNCITE). He has carried out a variety of research on the regional, community and business engagement roles of universities, including in rural and less-favoured regions.

Adam Leach is Programme Director of the National Civic Impact Accelerator (NCIA), based at Sheffield Hallam University, and helped to establish the Civic University Network. The NCIA works to gather evidence, share civic innovations, and provide universities with the framework and tools to deliver meaningful, measurable civic strategies and activities.

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