November 2018 saw the launch of an innovative and unprecedented collaboration between the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University to work towards the development of a Joint Civic Engagement Plan for the next five years.
The first phase of activity has seen both universities jointly evaluating our economic, social and cultural impact in order to enable us to better understand our contribution (both positive, and on occasion negative) to the local community.
In parallel we have undertaken a detailed mapping exercise, capturing current collaborative activity between the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University – we know there are plenty of examples across a broad spectrum of agendas. This, along with the results of our impact assessment work, will help us to identify where our strengths and opportunities lie – a really useful first step in establishing a constructive, place-based, output-driven foundation for our Joint Civic Engagement Plan.
In early 2020 we plan to launch a more detailed consultation with civic stakeholders across our community to identify areas of potential benefit for collaboration – be that unlocking government funding, joining forces to share expertise, working together on projects, strengthening links between our research output and student expertise and the needs of our local communities and businesses.
Both universities want to better articulate our local contribution and agenda to stakeholders and the public at all levels. Moreover, we recognise that we can do more and we can do things better as part of our civic role.
We have listened to our stakeholders and they want the universities in Nottingham to be able to speak with one voice where it makes sense to do so – the Universities for Nottingham initiative is our first step towards being able to respond to this more effectively.