Here we provide brief details of some of the partners we have worked with recently. We thank our partners for working with us. Links are provided so that you can find out more about these organisations.

aha associates logo

AHA Associates

Andrew Holder works with a small group of colleagues – AHA Associates – to support local government and other public services as they face major change. Robin Hambleton has collaborated with Andrew Holder on numerous projects including: writing national guidance for UK local government; running numerous courses and workshops for councillors, officers and public service professionals; providing support to local government in Victoria, Australia; and writing practice-oriented articles on innovation and change management.



Council of EuropeCouncil of Europe (CoE)

Founded in 1949 the Council of Europe (CoE), which now comprises 47 countries, aims to create a common democratic and legal area throughout the continent of Europe. The CoE is underpinned by a commitment to the fundamental values of: human rights, democracy and rule of law. In 2005 the CoE established a Forum for the Future of Democracy and this holds events to strengthen democracy, political freedoms and citizen participation. In October 2009 the Forum organised an international conference in Kiev, Ukraine, on ‘Electoral systems: strengthening democracy in the 21st century’. Robin Hambleton was one of the advisers to the conference, providing inputs on participation and inclusion.


urban researchThe European Urban Research Association (EURA)

The European Urban Research Association (EURA) is an international network of urban scholars and researchers with members in over 20 countries. The association encourages interdisciplinary and cross-national research in urban and regional studies and strives to bridge the gap between academic scholarship and policy and practice.


Improvement and Development AgencyImprovement and Development Agency (IDeA)

The Improvement and Development Agency (IDeA) works with elected councils to improve public services and enable local authorities to serve people and places better. The IDeA is owned by the Local Government Association and focuses on partnership working, place shaping and tackling cross-cutting issues. In 2008 the IDeA commissioned Urban Answers to examine the potential for international learning to boost innovative practice in English local government. A series of practice-oriented articles on International Insights resulted from this work and they were published in Municipal Journal and on the IDeA website.



Institute of Public PolicyInstitute of Public Policy, AUT University

The Institute of Public Policy (IPP), AUT University, Auckland provides independent research and advice on economic and social development in New Zealand and comparative countries. Located in the heart of the City of Auckland, the IPP provides research and analysis for a wide range of clients as well as a stimulating environment for graduate studies in public policy. Robin Hambleton was a keynote speaker at the ‘Governance for Auckland’ conference organised by AUT and Massey University in April 2009, and contributed to a number of leadership development events organised by AUT in Auckland, Wellington and elsewhere in New Zealand.



japan local govenment logoJapan Local Govenment Centre

The Japan Local Government Centre (JLGC) is the UK office of the Japan-based Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR). Founded in 1989, with the support of the Japan Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, CLAIR works to promote international exchange between localities in Japan and other countries. The JLGC, based in London, conducts research on local government in the UK and northern Europe and promotes exchanges between the UK and Japan. JLGC invited Robin Hambleton to chair the 2008 Japan Day Seminar, held in Derbyshire, on ‘Sustaining Regeneration through Partnerships in the Changing Economic Climate’.



local government association logo Local Government Association (LGA)

The Local Government Association (LGA) is a voluntary lobbying organization, acting on behalf of the local government sector. Urban Answers works closely with the LGA on a range of issues. For example, Robin Hambleton spoke at the LGA Conference in July 2008 on the potential of international lesson drawing for bringing about creative innovation in UK local government. The LGA sponsored the International Insights series featured on this website.


Local Government Yorkshire and Humber

Local Government Yorkshire and Humber (LGYH)

Local Government Yorkshire and Humber (LGYH) is the regional democratic voice for Yorkshire and Humber. It comprises a partnership of the 22 councils in the region together with the police and fire service authorities and the national park authorities. Established in 2006 the LGYH enables the authorities to work together on issues of common concern and it provides a united voice for local government in the region. Urban Answers has worked with LGYH on leadership development and themes relating to local democracy and public service innovation.



Municipal Association of VictoriaMunicipal Association of Victoria (MAV)

The Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV), Australia, is the peak representative and advocacy body for Victoria’s 79 councils. Founded in 1879 the MAV is an influential body speaking out for local government and working to ensure the improvement and development of local democracy. Urban Answers has assisted MAV with its programme of work on the Future of Local Government. Robin Hambleton spoke at the Local Government Summit held in Melbourne in May 2009 on ‘Leading Localities in a Global Era’ and has provided strategic advice to MAV over a number of years.



municiple journal logoMunicipal Journal (MJ)

Municipal Journal (MJ) is the leading UK management journal for local authority business. Established in 1893 MJ provides news and analysis of all matters relating to local government on weekly basis. Robin Hambleton has written articles for MJ for over twenty years and has written several series of articles. These include International Insights (2008) and Public Service Futures (2004/05), both featured on the Urban Answers website.



solace logoThe Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers (SOLACE)

The Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers (SOLACE) is the representative body for senior strategic managers working in the public sector. The society promotes public sector management excellence and provides professional development for its members. Urban Answers works with SOLACE on themes relating to local leadership and local government innovation. Robin Hambleton has written national guidance for SOLACE (on managerial leadership and on the city management model of local government management); has spoken at the annual SOLACE conference; and has written on leadership themes for the SOLACE Foundation. SOLACE have leant their support to the International Insights series featured on this website.



udite logoUDITE

UDITE is the Union des Dirigeants Territoriaux de l’Europe – the Union of Local Authority Chief Executives of Europe. It aims to promote good relations between the professional associations of chief executives representing European local authorities. UDITE supported the International Insights series produced by Urban Answers in 2008 and Robin Hambleton spoke on how to improve international exchange at the UDITE International Conference held in Cardiff in September 2008.


Royal Commission on Auckland GovernanceRoyal Commission on Auckland Governance

The Royal Commission on Auckland Governance was established by the New Zealand Government in October 2007. The Commission held hearings, received over 3500 written submissions and commissioned numerous research reports. In March 2009 it published an extensive analysis of the challenges facing the Auckland city region and proposed radical changes in governance arrangements. The four-volume report provides a valuable resource for all those concerned with metropolitan reform. Urban Answers was invited to advise the Commission on matters relating to civic leadership and our report on ‘Civic Leadership for Auckland. An International Perspective’ was published in Volume 4 of the Commission’s report.



rtpi logoThe Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI)

The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) is the professional institute for town planners. It promotes good planning and urban design, develops and shapes policy affecting the built environment, and oversees the education, training and professional development of planners.



Whitehall Innovation HubWhitehall Innovation Hub

Established in 2008 the Whitehall Innovation Hub was created to develop awareness and understanding relating to innovation in the public sector and to spur innovation across the public services. Located within the National School of Government the Hub works not only with government departments at national level but also with public service leaders in the regions and locally. The work of the Hub is closely aligned with a wider range of efforts designed to update and transform the performance of government. Urban Answers has provided strategic advice to the Hub and contributed to various seminars and workshops designed to promote innovative thinking and practice.