Learning & Skills

Current projects

Leadership of Place for the Knowledge-Based Economy

We have commissioned the University of Birmingham to conduct a research project to consider what leadership of place will entail in the future, and how future leaders can be prepared for this role.

The report forms part of ASC's research and learning activity concerned with improving the leadership, managerial and technical skills of policymakers and practitioners.


This research aims to understand and explain the critical features of leadership of place in a new context - economic development, planning and regeneration activity in the knowledge-based economy (KBE).

Through reference to literature, discussion with practitioners and material from six case studies, it identifies:

  • A new framework for researching the leadership dimensions of economic development, planning and regeneration policy in the KBE.
  • New perspectives on effective leadership in different places (via case study examples from across Europe).
  • Transferable lessons establishing why certain approaches are successful.
  • Recommendations about how ASC can move the agenda forward through further research and the development of learning materials.

Case Studies

The following case studies were chosen to examine the role of strategic leadership in KBE place shaping initiatives:

  • Birmingham Eastside - the transformation of a 130-hectare urban site into a ‘creative quarter' (UK). » Download case study.
  • Central Technology Belt, West Midlands - the creation of a technology-rich ‘corridor' of regeneration (UK). » Download case study
  • Switch on Shropshire - connecting rural communities to the digital revolution (UK). » Download case study
  • MINALOGIC, Grenoble - maintaining excellence in technology via clusters (France). » Download case study
  • Styria - high-tech diversification and economic change via clusters (Austria) » Download case study
  • Medicon Valley Alliance and the Øresund Science Region - cross-border development of high-tech clusters and networks (Denmark/Sweden). » Download case study

» Download Research Summary (PDF - 175kB)

» Download Full Report (PDF - 1.78Mb)