Leader of Hampshire County Council, Roy Perry, said: “We’ve put in place this Commission of Inquiry to learn how, collectively, we can establish a vision to put Hampshire in the best possible position for future generations. Our focus at the hearing today was on the Economy, where we heard some truly thought provoking presentations from experts in their fields.”
Evidence was provided at the Hampshire 2050 Commission of Inquiry on the Economy from Nick Coote, Head of Thames Valley, Lambert Smith Hampton; Don Spalinger, the Director Research and Innovation Services at the University of Southampton, John Till, Director of Thinking Place and David Fletcher, Assistant Director (Economic Development) at Hampshire County Council.
Councillor Perry continued: “There are certainly some challenges ahead, but I think what’s come through loud and clear today is that we have a strong base to build on. Hampshire is home to world class research universities and successful business clusters. We are fortunate to live in a county surrounded by unique coastline and outstanding countryside, as well as enjoying a strong cultural heritage.
“Our challenge is to make the most of this potential, so that Hampshire continues to prosper. Encouraging business to locate, grow and succeed here; ensuring tomorrow’s workforce has the right skills to thrive; and creating an environment which is attractive for people of all ages and backgrounds are some of the factors coming through very clearly.”
The Hampshire 2050 Commission of Inquiry examines some of the main, inter-related elements that will have an impact on living and working in Hampshire into the future:
- Demographic and societal changes: including changing population and living patterns, and the impact in terms of health and social care, housing and employment
Economy: the future of the Hampshire economy in the context of Brexit, increasing globalisation and potential digital and automation revolutions
Work, Skills and Lifestyle: future learning and working patterns, and the skills needed in a post digital future as well as the wider quality of life within Hampshire such as arts, leisure and culture
Environment and Quality of Place: Hampshire’s main economic asset – the impact of a changing climate, different patterns of living and working, and competing demands on countryside and farmland on environmental quality, character and quality of life in Hampshire
Mobile, Connectivity and Energy: the transport impact of electric powered and autonomous vehicles, smart technology in homes and workplaces, communications technology, and future energy issues
Rural Hampshire: how economic, social, technological and environmental changes are likely to affect rural communities and the potential for a rural renaissance
Hampshire 2050 will link to national plans, such as the Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan and its focus on housing and infrastructure to inform potential economic deals for Hampshire.
Hampshire residents are invited to complete an online questionnaire on each of the six key themes about what may happen in the future, what the impact of this will be, and how the County Council and partner organisations need to respond to this.