Leaders create action plan for city’s future at #VibrantSheffield live lab

The second #VibrantSheffield live lab at the Winter Gardens, hosted by Grant Thornton, on July 19, 2016
The second #VibrantSheffield live lab at the Winter Gardens, hosted by Grant Thornton, on July 19, 2016
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Business, arts, charity and public sector leaders came together to form an action plan designed to shape Sheffield’s future.

Professional services firm Grant Thornton hosted a follow-up live lab at the Winter Gardens to build on ideas raised at the first #VibrantSheffield event in May.

The second #VibrantSheffield live lab at the Winter Gardens, hosted by Grant Thornton, on July 19, 2016

The second #VibrantSheffield live lab at the Winter Gardens, hosted by Grant Thornton, on July 19, 2016

Free public wi-fi internet, creating cyclist-friendly roads and supporting a basic income for all were just a few of the initiatives discussed at the event, and a new plan of action means they could go on to become reality.

Grant Thornton managing partner Paul Houghton said it was a collaboration which ‘drives the ideas and actions to enable cities, companies and communities to build a more vibrant economy; one that accelerates both economic and social progress in the UK’.

He added: “The Sheffield city region is an exciting place to be at the moment, with lots of fantastic things going on and a wealth of potential to do even more. We’re passionate about the city and its future, which is why we’re delighted to be able to bring together like-minded people who share this passion to help the city reach its full potential.

“At our live lab event in May, we uncovered the Sheffield City Region’s strengths and we dreamed, discovered and designed an exciting future.

“This was just the beginning and we’re now working together to bring these ideas to life, from maximising value from the proposed wi-fi platform, to creating an app to connect students with opportunities, for the benefit of the entire city.”

Following the event, a plan of action was drawn up. Groups, led by entrepreneurial business leaders including Ruth Amos of Stairsteady and Chris Dymond of Sheffield Digital, will now move forward with a number of projects.

These include developing opportunities such as the proposed free city centre wireless internet, supporting young people with skills and employability and establishing Sheffield as a cycling city.

Pilot schemes, including making the city region a test case for a national basic income to support entrepreneurial innovation and business growth, are also on the agenda.

To find out more about each project and to get involved, join the conversation on Twitter under the hashtag #VibrantSheffield.

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