Last week a couple of us were lucky enough to get some of the prized tickets for Andy Burnham’s GM Digital and Tech Summit. Andy Burnham, as the newly elected major for Greater Manchester outlined his ambition to establish the region as the UK’s digital leader.  The event was so over-subscribed that Stockport and Oldham held satellite summits for those who couldn’t get to the main event. The Digital team here at Stockport put on a great day, enabling guests to hear Andy and the panels, and for them to fully interact in workshop sessions and voting using the online App Meetoo.

As a born and bred Mancunian I was proud to see so many amazing individuals who are passionate about the potential of digital and technology. In the words of Andy, together we need to ‘harness the power of technology’ and spark a new ‘digital revolution’ and ‘shape a vision for a genuinely smart city region where technology is used as a vital part of the solution to the biggest issues we face in society.’

I believe that the creativity, grit and determination of this city means that it is a vision we can achieve. Greater Manchester has always been a city with difference. I think we can be a digital city with a difference, one with a great digital economy where businesses are supported and citizens can get access to skills, training and work experience they need to make that growth happen. We can also be a city where technology is used to deliver positive change, from connecting young people with opportunities, to tackling social problems such as homelessness, health and the environment. This bold vision places the needs of people firmly at the heart of technological innovation.

Here at Stockport we are investing in the infrastructure for businesses and have launched a Digital Academy to create a pipeline that meets the council’s skills shortage for now whilst producing the highly skilled workforce of the future. We are creating a high quality agile digital platform for public services built in a modular way to reduce the cost of the change we know will come. We are building to user needs, based on our transformation strategy using open standards. We are putting people first and creating a culture of continuous improvement.

Get in touch if you’d like to find out more about our journey or even join us as part of yours.

Emma Collingridge – Digital by Design Programme