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Five people sitting behind a table, with the man second left addressing the audience (off camera)

Durham University is absolutely committed to playing its part in North East England, supporting devolution and an inclusive approach to growth.

That was the message from Shaid Mahmood, our Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion), as he spoke at the 2023 Labour Party conference.

Durham at the party conferences

In the UK, each of the major political parties holds an annual conference to discuss policies.

This year, jointly with the think tank Onward, we’ve hosted events at both the Conservative and Labour party conferences, as well as participating in the Liberal Democrat event.

Our event at the Labour Party conference, being held in Liverpool from Sunday 8 October to Wednesday 11 October, was titled: ‘Zoning in on growth: driving prosperity through place-based strategies’.

Working together for jobs and prosperity

Shaid joined a panel also featuring Chi Onwurah MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Science, Research and Innovation; Rain Newton-Smith, Director General of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI); Sarah Main, Executive Director of the Campaign for Science and Engineering; and chaired by Allan Nixon, Head of Science and Technology at Onward.

Shaid spoke about how we’re working with local political institutions and businesses and an anchor institution in North East England, driving productivity and growth.

Our contribution…

Among other projects, Shaid spoke about:

  • Our work with NETPark, a premier science park in County Durham, and home to Orbit university enterprise zone;
  • How we will lead a new £21.3 million national research partnership focused on decarbonising the UK maritime sector; and
  • How we’re commercialising space technology.

On Sunday 1 October, we jointly hosted an event at the Conservative Party conference, with a panel including George Freeman MP, UK Minister for Science and Technology.

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