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Commission hears from West Midlands on region’s infrastructure priorities

Commission hears from West Midlands on region’s infrastructure priorities

What West Midlands needs to build a thriving regional economy – and the role infrastructure can play in helping achieve that goal – was on the agenda for the Commission’s regional visit to Birmingham last week, the second in a series of six visits to cities and city regions around the country designed to help...

4 Jul 2022 By
James Heath: Reaching out to inform the next Assessment
Commissioners in high vis clothing visiting an infrastructure site

James Heath: Reaching out to inform the next Assessment

There is a quote from Einstein that is, I think, very relevant to the world of public policy. He reportedly said: “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer”. While I might disagree with the smart bit (!), Einstein’s observation about the value of having time and space to...

9 Jun 2022 By
Five lessons from our overview of infrastructure challenges
Solar panels in a UK field

Five lessons from our overview of infrastructure challenges

Last month the Commission published its Baseline Report for the second National Infrastructure Assessment (NIA2), identifying key challenges for the coming decades that we will explore in more detail in that Assessment. I worked as lead author on the report, pulling together work from across the Commission’s team into a single narrative. Here are some...

7 Dec 2021 By
Warming up a new way to model future behaviours
Woman and child wearing colorful pair of woolly socks warming cold feet in front of heating radiator in winter time. Electric or gas heater at home.

Warming up a new way to model future behaviours

An opinion piece by David Menzies, Modelling Lead for the National Infrastructure Commission. To a large extent, how you heat your home is your decision. For most people it’s also a decision taken when their existing heating system is at or near the end of its life. Will you keep gas central heating? Will you...

1 Dec 2021 By
In sight but out of mind: designing infrastructure to support mental health
Bridge in Bedford

In sight but out of mind: designing infrastructure to support mental health

An opinion piece by Ann Zhang, economist at Frontier Economics and Chair of the Commission’s Young Professionals Panel. A Breath of fresh air: Green space and mental health If there is one lesson that lockdown has taught me, (aside from the fact I will never be a star baker), it is that access to green...

13 Oct 2021 By
The long term role of cars in towns
Blurred silhouettes of cars surrounded by steam from the exhaust pipes

The long term role of cars in towns

An opinion piece by Mike Davis, Consultant Engineer at E4Tech, and Jo Garvey-Rae, Senior Cost Manager at Turner & Townsend, both members of the Commission’s Young Professionals Panel. The last 12 months has seen a renewed recognition that some towns and places are being left behind, both in terms of productivity and wider quality of...

28 Jul 2021 By
Can local energy planning help solve ‘double challenge’ of net zero and levelling up?
Modern white radiator with thermostat reduced to economy mode

Can local energy planning help solve ‘double challenge’ of net zero and levelling up?

An opinion piece by Cissie Liu, senior regulation analyst at SSE Plc and Mike Davis, chartered engineer and a senior consultant at E4tech; both members of the Commission’s Young Professionals Panel (YPP). Background The Commission’s YPP has committed to explore decarbonisation and levelling up as our two key themes for 2021, as both have a...

28 Jul 2021 By
We must press the accelerator on transport decarbonisation
Buses at a busy bus station

We must press the accelerator on transport decarbonisation

An opinion piece by Caroline Bryce, Asset Management Adviser at Mott MacDonald and member of the Commission’s Young Professionals Panel. The UK announced its sixth Carbon Budget earlier this year, committing to reducing emissions by 78 per cent by 2035 compared to 1990 levels. The government expects to achieve this target through investing and capitalising...

20 Jul 2021 By
How infrastructure can help counter infection
People traveling by airplane during COVID 19 wearing N95 face masks, waiting in line at airport terminal. Close up of woman disinfecting hands.

How infrastructure can help counter infection

An opinion piece by Monica Laucas, drawing on conversation with Chelsea Stefanska, Global Health Security Specialist at Mott MacDonald I recently discussed with Chelsea Stefanska, a Global Health Security Specialist at Mott MacDonald, how epidemiology can influence infrastructure design and how infrastructure can be retrofitted to be pandemic resilient. “As an infectious disease epidemiologist, it...

22 Mar 2021 By
Young infrastructure professionals test top ten proposals for driving change
A picture showing different sized gears

Young infrastructure professionals test top ten proposals for driving change

Our Young Professionals Panel considers the government’s National Infrastructure Strategy and Budget and puts forward its top ten recommendations in response to the Strategy and the Commission’s recent Annual Monitoring Report.

15 Mar 2021 By
Looking back at transport development
A Princess Coronation (Duchess) class express steam locomotive steaming fast up the west coast main line on the fringes of the English Lake District. A car travelling in the opposite direction is on the adjacent M6 motorway.

Looking back at transport development

If you’re reading this, you’ll probably know we recently launched our data pages, an area of our website which provides you with easy access to the data we have used, and data we think you’ll find interesting. As promised in our launch blog, we have now added our historic transport datasets which you can find...

12 Mar 2021 By
Valuing natural capital in infrastructure
View across Pegwell Bay Marsh

Valuing natural capital in infrastructure

This week, government has launched a consultation on its draft policy statement on five environmental principles, to be enshrined in the Environment Bill. The announcement follows hot on the heels of last month’s publication of the Dasgupta Review on the Economics of Biodiversity. This landmark report made a decisive link between the economy and nature, suggesting...

11 Mar 2021 By
Learning the lessons for a highly renewable future
Solar panels on a field

Learning the lessons for a highly renewable future

The last few months have been a busy time for UK energy policy. The government published its long awaited Energy White Paper, The Climate Change Committee produced its 1,000 pages of advice to the government on the level of the next carbon budget, and HM Treasury published its interim report on the costs of the...

24 Feb 2021 By
Opening up our data
3d rendering of rows of network servers machine farm cloud computing hardware on blue sky background.

Opening up our data

Here at the Commission, data underpins our work. It helps us understand the state of infrastructure in the UK, how well it is performing for us, and what infrastructure we might need in the future. Because it’s so important, we’ve been working to make it easier for you to access and use. Welcome to our...

6 Nov 2020 By
Better defining ‘levelling up’ is a crucial step to achieving it
Portrait of Professor Sir Tim Besley CBE

Better defining ‘levelling up’ is a crucial step to achieving it

Some form of regional inequality has been a persistent feature of the UK.  Not only are there profound differences between regions (i.e. North and South), there are also inequalities within regions. Pockets of low productivity and heightened levels of deprivation exist in both successful and unsuccessful places.  But these are not set in stone; changing...


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