Things have been quieter on the blog front recently because I've been in Lille from 1-5 April and then Leuven from 5-9 April at the Regional Studies Association International Conference 2009. The event brings together key thinkers (not that I think I'm amongst them!) in regional studies from across Europe and the wider world, though it tends to be mostly European. Papers given at the conference were varied and reflect the broad constituency of the field of regional studies itself. So, we find economists mixing with geographers, planners and those who transcend disciplinary boundaries.
Of particular interest for me here was the special session centred on DCLG (a government department in the UK, with responsibilities in England) and the establishment of the new spatial analysis unit, headed by David Wood (economist by training). There were three pleasing aspects about this for me. First, the fact that David Wood and Verity Morgan from DCLG were in attendance in the first place - very good. Second, the fact that there is a new unit within DCLG dedicated to spatial analysis - this is right down my street, as previous posts have shown. Finally, the fact that senior people in the Department are enthusiastic about this kind of work, and particularly work which I had a key role in - I've blogged on it before.
Finally, some visuals on the route from Sheffield to Leuven. I'm taking the Eurostar back...
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