Regional Economic Observatory video transcript

Welcome to the new University of Derby Regional Economic Observatory, where our mission is to make a real difference to the region's businesses, people and the communities they live in.

With our region and the nation underperforming, there is much to do. We are independent, open-minded, with an unprecedented breadth and depth of expertise available to us. We are about evidence-based informed solutions, recognising the interconnectedness of people,
work, business, and the community in a way that transcends traditional policy making. All from our central location in a city built upon industrial innovation and business sense.

Derby has always been at the forefront of economic transformation. During the middle ages Derby grew, becoming a large and important town. New industries sprung up including cloth manufacture, brewing and clock making. In the 18th century Derby was at the forefront of the industrial revolution and was the birthplace of what we now know as the factory system. Derby grew rapidly, with the world's first water powered silk mill in 1717 and first water powered cotton spinning mill at Cromford in 1771. The Cromford mills template was soon adopted elsewhere in the cotton industry and then in other industries changing our society forever.

With the growth of the railways, Derby began to emerge as an engineering centre during the 19th century. Derby's railway workshops became a major employer as did the iron foundries and other notable industries at the time including brewing, china making and paint making. Derby's manufacturing and engineering prowess was further invigorated from 1907 when Rolls-Royce opened a car and aircraft factory in Derby. And, Derby's manufacturing heritage grew further in the late 1980s with the opening of Toyota's manufacturing plant.
In 1996 Tomb Raider was first developed in Derby and the city has since built a reputation as a centre for computer gaming, creativity and digitalisation. Where else would a section of the ring road be called Lara Croft way?

Today Derby is listed as the second best place in the country to make a living and we at the University of Derby Regional Economic Observatory are committed to identifying future requirements to enable the region to continue its transformation, being at the forefront of innovation and economic development. We will do this by asking the right questions, carrying out rigorous and relevant analysis
and providing informed solutions.

The University of Derby Regional Economic Observatory will build a robust evidence base to inform economic and social policy deliberations, to engage with people and businesses and to produce the analysis to support engagement with national government policy. We will engage with the public and with businesses to inform our research agendas.

Regional Economic Observatory video

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