North East councils crowdsource ideas for digital strategy

Councils in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne and Gateshead are looking for ideas to create a new digital strategy for the North East.

A consultation has been launched in an attempt to gather ideas from digital employers, employees, education bodies and other relevant groups.

An initial survey will establish the current state of the sector in the region and how councils can help digital businesses achieve their ambitions in areas such as business support, accommodation, infrastructure and skills. 

Pat Ritchie, chief executive of Newcastle City Council, said: “The digital sector is the fastest growing and most dynamic part of Newcastle’s economy.

“Sustaining this trajectory comes with many challenges, including securing the right skills, funding, property and business support – alongside product innovation and achieving the necessary sales.”

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Mary Foy, cabinet member for economy at Gateshead Council, said: “As a council, we are attracting businesses at the cutting edge of digital technology to Gateshead.

“This research will help to gather the information and the data we need to help fully support the digital sector in the future.”

Both councils have tasked North East-based business development specialist, Auxin Associates, to help coordinate the consultation.

Two focus groups will then be held at Campus North in Newcastle next week.

Those wishing to take part can register and complete the survey at

Colin Marrs

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