2013 – Bradford

The Academy’s 8th Annual Congress
The Producer City: an urbanism for the 21st century?

15-17 May 2013, Bradford, UK




Download a print-version of the Programme



In the late 20th century, the role of many cities shifted away from production, assembly and physical trade, to various modes of consumption, through services, retail, tourism and, with the information revolution, ‘living on thin air’ through the financial and the knowledge economy sectors.

Major industrial cities of the Victorian and Edwardian eras, like Sheffield, Glasgow and Birmingham, had to forge new roles. Today we are seeing a reinvention of the productive city that makes and sells things, combining creative processes with technology and international marketing. Is the Producer City the way forward? What does it do and what does it look like?

Using the Yorkshire city of Bradford as our laboratory, this year’s Congress will explore the notion of how an established ‘post industrial city’ rethinks its roles, economy, and also recasts its physical place, to help it compete both locally and in the global economy.

Participants and delegates from a wide range of backgrounds will explore the topic and, through workshops, help contribute to Bradford’s continuing thinking about how it shapes up to address future challenges in its City Plan. We will also visit UNESCO world quality heritage at Saltaire, and exemplar venues such as the National Media Museum, and acclaimed Alhambra Theatre.

For those of you interested in exploring how towns and cities reshape themselves in changing economic circumstances, The Producer City Congress at Bradford is a must.





Session one: 16 May 2013
City Narrative – The Producer City


Introduction to Congress
Kevin Murray – Chairman, The Academy of Urbanism


The Producer City & City Plan
Barra Mac Ruairi – Strategic Director of Regeneration & Culture, City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council

Advanced Manufacturing for a Traditional City John Eaglesham – Chief Executive, ADI


A City for All
Zulfi Karim – Founder, The World Curry Festival

Link to the video in Zulfi’s presentation: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-21740658



Session two: 16 May 2013
Changing Economics – The Creation of Producer Cities


Introduction to the session
Colin Philpott – Chief Executive, Bradford Breakthrough / Philpott Media


The Producer City – the Economic Future for Cities
Prof Stuart Gulliver – Emeritus Professor, University of Glasgow

Economic Strategies from the Bottom Up Michael Ward – Chair, Centre for Local Economic Strategies


Questions & Discussion from Session Two



Learning from Europe – Keynote Address

Urbanism and the Unlearning of Architecture
Prof Tina Saaby Madsen


Workshop Sessions

Culture & Skills for a Producer City Tony Stephens

Economic Strategy & Prosperity
David Shepherd

Digital Urbanism Tim Stonor

The Constant Remaking of Place
Julian Jackson

Place Learning Networks Henk Bouwman