The University of Derby has launched a plan, which aims to drive forward the recovery and regeneration of Derby and Derbyshire.
The Civic University Agreement, created following extensive consultation, details the long-term civic ambitions of the university – and how it intends to work with 15 other organisations to achieve its goals.
At a recent launch event, the university was joined by some of those signatories, which includes University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, Derby City Council, Derbyshire County Council, East Midlands Chamber, D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership and Derby Cathedral.
Professor Kathryn Mitchell CBE, vice-chancellor of the University of Derby, said: “The University of Derby has always been civic – educating, innovating, creating, making, and inspiring, but this is the first time we have explicitly set out our civic intentions and articulated the overall impact made by the university and its staff and students.
“Through our Civic University Agreement, we are making a clear statement of intent as to how we will approach our civic role moving forward.
“However, the ambitions we have set out need support from others if we are to achieve them and I am overwhelmed by the positive response from the organisations we approached to be signatories and who will be alongside us on this important journey.”
The agreement aims to channel aspirations, support local communities, share knowledge and enhance the area’s overall offer and vibrancy.
It focuses on five core goals, designed to make a positive impact on the people, communities, organisations and businesses within Derby and Derbyshire.
They are to secure the university’s future, drive ambition and positive change, make a positive environmental impact, support health and wellbeing and invest in culture as a driver for change.
During the launch event, each goal was brought to life through a civic showcase, highlighting the breadth of projects and initiatives underway.
These included presentations on apprenticeships and skills, raising aspirations, green travel and the university’s research into long-Covid.
Councillor Chris Poulter, leader of Derby City Council, said: “It’s really exciting to be a signatory of this Civic University Agreement alongside so many other key partners in the city and region.
“The university is critical to the economic, social, cultural and environmental wellbeing of Derby, and I’m pleased to see those themes reflected in the agreement.”
Councillor Barry Lewis, leader of Derbyshire County Council, said: “We are delighted to have signed the Civic University Agreement as it contains extremely positive, ambitious and forward-thinking aims and objectives which very much align with our own.”
Scott Knowles, chief executive of East Midlands Chamber, said: “This Civic University Agreement demonstrates the leading role in transforming place, stimulating economic growth and providing skills for the future that the University of Derby will take to contribute to the long-term economic prosperity aspirations that exist in Derby and Derbyshire.”
Will Morlidge, chief executive of the D2N2 LEP, said: “The Civic University Agreement is a clear sign that partners remain committed to improving social mobility and driving forward innovation and the economic prosperity of our city and county.”
The Very Revd Peter Robinson, Dean of Derby Cathedral, said: “Derby Cathedral feels privileged to be one of the signatories involved in the Civic University Agreement.
“We believe through shared knowledge, expertise and learning, the agreement will further develop and strengthen the active strategic partnerships across all sectors, which will drive forward recovery and sustainability and contribute to the future prosperity of our city and county.”