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GW4 responds to agreement aimed at strengthening ties between Wales and Cornwall

GW4 responds to agreement aimed at strengthening ties between Wales and Cornwall

Representatives from Cornwall Council and the Welsh Government have recently announced the signing of an historic agreement which, they say, will strengthen the ties between Cornwall and Wales.

The agreement, signed by Cornwall Council Leader, Cllr Linda Taylor, and the First Minister of Wales, the Rt Hon Mark Drakeford MS, will see representatives of Cornwall Council and the Welsh Government meeting at least four times a year to share best practice and develop solutions to areas of mutual challenge.

The areas of focus covered in the agreement, which include topics such as sustainable housing provision, achieving Net Zero, supporting rural economies and celebrating culture and language, share close alignment with the strategic priorities outlined in the GW4 Alliance’s recently launched Strategic Vision 2023 – 2028, providing a strong opportunity for the Alliance to support the partnership’s aims and ambitions across the two regions.

The new Strategic Vision, launched in May 2023, outlines four core priorities which the Alliance of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter universities will work to address over the next five years. These have been selected to address some of the biggest challenges currently facing our society and include:

  • Tackling global challenges through advanced cyber and digital transformation
  • Effective routes to accelerate the transition to sustainable Net Zero
  • Capitalising on creative communities to foster sociocultural growth
  • Advancing health and wellbeing research and innovation for all

Dr Joanna Jenkinson MBE, Director of the GW4 Alliance, said: “The GW4 Alliance was established in recognition of the fact that change doesn’t happen alone and, by bringing together different institutions, we become greater than the sum of our parts. It is encouraging to see a mutual agreement between Cornwall Council and the Welsh Government, which shares similarities with the priorities outlined in our new Strategic Vision. I am hopeful that this agreement will create many opportunities for the GW4 Alliance to work closely with the authorities in the regions to address areas of common interest.”

Professor Martin Siegert, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Cornwall) at the University of Exeter, said: “Collaboration is at the heart of everything we do at GW4 and, through our Alliance, we have already fostered strong working relationships between our institutions in Wales (Cardiff University) and the South West of England (University of Exeter, Cornwall Campus). We look forward to seeing the impact of the mutual agreement between Cornwall Council and the Welsh Government, and to exploring the enhanced potential for collaborating with the partnership on core issues affecting our regions.”

Professor Roger Whitaker, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research, Innovation and Enterprise at Cardiff University, said: “Through our internationally-leading research and innovation strengths, the South Wales region and the South West of England are uniquely placed to work together to tackle some of the UK’s biggest strategic priorities. To see an agreement which will enable Cornwall and Wales to collaborate and share examples of knowledge and best practice is a great step forward for both regions. The GW4 Alliance look forward to identifying opportunities to support the partnership to achieve positive impact in areas of mutual focus.”

University of Bath
University of Bristol
Cardiff University
University of Exeter