Iwona is an economist with 13 years of international policy experience at the World Bank, the European Commission, the London School of Economics and Political Science, NGOs and the private sector. Iwona has been working with governments in Europe and Central Asia, in particular, on reforms and programs targeting entrepreneurship, public research commercialisation and private sector competitiveness including formulation of innovation strategies, institutional capacity building, development of executive agencies supporting private sector innovation, design and supervision of the implementation of programs for financing innovation. Iwona holds a PhD in economics from Warsaw School of Economics in Poland in collaboration with George Washington University, USA.
In her thesis, Iwona investigated innovation and learning patterns across sectors of the West Midlands region with implications for the region’s innovation policy.
Dr Zhaoya Gong
Dr Zhaoya Gong is a quantitative human geographer and Geographic Information Scientist. His research interests centre on two interwoven themes, namely leveraging computational and data sciences to advance geographic information science, and dynamic processes of urbanisation and complex modalities of spatial structures generated at various scales, as articulated by interactions of land use and transportation/mobility systems, with respect to the social, economic, and environmental sustainability of resulting urban settlements.
Dr Catherine Harris
Catherine Harris is a Senior Research Fellow within the Birmingham Business School. She currently works for City-REDI. Her PhD investigated the experiences of Polish migrant entrepreneurs in the West Midlands region of the UK and is the first large-scale study of its kind. Her key areas of interest include enterprise, ethnic entrepreneurship and EU labour migration.
Methodologically, Catherine’s interest is in qualitative and ethnographic research. Catherine’s research has attracted interest internationally and has been disseminated in both the print and broadcast media.
Professor Geoffrey J.D. Hewings
We are also pleased to work with Professor Geoffrey J.D. Hewings who is Director of REAL; the Regional Economic Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign.
He has received Fulbright and Woodrow Wilson awards and was Executive Director of the Regional Science Association International which recognized him with an award for Service to Regional Science.
Dr Charlotte Hoole
Charlotte joined City-REDI as a Policy and Data Analyst in October 2016. Her core research explores place-based leadership and governance in the context of devolved power structures, fiscal austerity and city-regions, with a methodological focus that centres on qualitative techniques. After completing her PhD in Urban Studies and Planning in March 2018, Charlotte won an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Sheffield that will begin in October 2018. She will remain an associate of City-REDI and will continue her collaboration with the Institute.
Peter’s research and teaching focus on the relationship between people and place based social exclusion, how policies are designed to reduce exclusion and increase competitiveness whilst reconciling the uneven trajectory and function of places. He has led on a number of housing market, regeneration and planning related research and consultancy projects for a diverse range of clients and funding bodies including the Department for Communities and Local Government, The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (UK), the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the European Commission and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. Peter has worked on a number of consultative projects for regional agencies, local authorities and third sector agencies across the UK including the West Midlands and North East regional assemblies, Sheffield and Leeds City Regions and Liverpool and Birmingham City Councils. He was instrumental in delivering the current West Midlands Regional Housing Strategy and Birmingham City Council’s Housing Strategy and his research informed the establishment of the £2 billion Housing Market Renewal Pathfinder Programme (2003-2011).
After a recent retirement from a senior position at the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), Allan joins the University as an Honorary Professor and brings his extensive knowledge of Whitehall, local government and the European Commission and member states.
His area of expertise aligns closely with CityREDI, including understanding cities and urban transformation, understanding urban economies and environments, and policy aspects of Smart Cities, including the development of the Government’s strategy in this area, which was published in October 2013, and BSI’s strategy for developing a suite of smart city standards. He has been a member of Birmingham City Council’s Smart City Group and was instrumental in the development of the Greenwich Smart City Strategy, which was published recently.
Dr Laura Reynolds
Laura Reynolds is a Postdoctoral Research Associate within the Welsh Economy Research Unit at Cardiff University. Her role involves providing expertise on the Welsh economy and regional economic analysis in a manner that engages the academic community and Welsh businesses. Before returning to Cardiff, she worked as a Policy and Data Analyst within the City-REDI team. Laura completed an ESRC-funded PhD at Cardiff University in 2018, investigating stakeholder governance in a decentralised place branding process. In particular, her research addresses the opportunities and challenges for stakeholders when participating in the presentation of cities and regions. Her research interests include city and regional governance, stakeholder engagement, place branding, small business governance and business innovation.
Dr Amir Qamar
Amir joined City-REDI as a Research Associate in October 2016 and is currently looking to better understand the relationship between the regional economy and specific firms. This research includes investigating multiplier effects within certain supply chains, the employment footprint of MNEs, R&D initiatives, and productivity levels.
Amir has a background in Economics and International Business, but his more recent work has focused on Operations Management and Supply Chain Management as his PhD research investigated the performance and contextual trade-offs between lean and agile organisations within the automotive industry in the West Midlands. Amir has experience of teaching a wide range of modules in the domains of business strategy and operations.
Dr Emmanouil Tranos
Dr Emmanouil Tranos is an economic geographer focusing primarily on the spatiality of the digital economy. He is a Lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Birmingham and has published on issues related with the geography of the internet infrastructure, the economic impacts that this digital infrastructure can generate on cities and regions and the position of cities within spatial, complex networks. His research in this area led to a monograph on “The Geography of the Internet: cities, regions and Internet infrastructure”. Emmanouil has also a strong interest and expertise on the use of new sources of big data, such as data from mobile phone operators, as a means to improve our understanding of the complexities of cities and urban systems. Currently, he is doing research on (i) the role of online social media as a medium for knowledge transfer and (ii) the evolution of the digital economy in the UK by utilising the wealth of archived web data.
Professor Stephan Weiler
Stephan Weiler is the Director of REDI@CSU, a research institute based at Colorado State University which aims to understand, analyse, and inform economic development strategies, particularly in struggling regions in both rural and urban areas, especially in Colorado. He holds the William E. Morgan Endowed Chair as Professor of Economics at Colorado State University. Stephan’s research, teaching and mentoring have spanned a variety of development and labour market issues in Africa, Appalachia, Europe, and the American West. His current work focuses on regional economic growth and development, particularly in rural and inner-city areas, combining theoretical, empirical, and policy analyses on topics such as information, innovation, industrial restructuring, land use, public/private partnerships, immigration, entrepreneurship, and the environment.
City-REDI is working in partnership with REDI@CSU to provide fresh, timely, and cutting-edge information to enhance economic growth and development prospects for regions across the globe.