The N8 Strategic Executive Group (SEG) and N8 Board both met in early October in Manchester.
The N8 Board agreed to provide both N8 AgriFood and the N8 Policing Research Partnership with some additional funding to allow the work of the programmes to continue, following the completion of the HEFCE Catalyst grants. Both programmes are actively seeking funding to support the core secretariat; and it was noted that the time required to establish and reap the benefits of collaborative programmes like these is much longer than originally anticipated. This learning will be built into our thinking for the development of future collaborative programmes and in discussions with funders.
The budget and objectives for the Directorate Team were agreed for 2019-2020. Key activities for the team will be in developing the research programmes within the themes of Child of the North and Clean and Productive Businesses, and continuing to advocate for the N8 Research Partnership, and research and innovation in the North of England more generally with funders and other government departments.
The Strategic Executive Group heard from Suzy Jones, the Director of RIBA North, about the developing collaboration between RIBA North and the N8. They were strongly supportive of this exciting collaboration and felt there was the potential for a great deal of excellent research to take place in areas of shared interest.
Board and SEG both received a report from N8 International Group about the visit to Ghana earlier in the year, and progress since then in developing co-created research proposals with African Research Universities Alliance members. The International Group were thanked by the Board for their proactive efforts and collaborative approach; a model for partnership working across the N8 universities.