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The Progressive Policy Think Tank

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Sarah leads IPPR North, IPPR's dedicated think-tank for the north of England.

She is an expert in regional and local economic development, place resilience and land use planning, and has written reports for IPPR North on small and medium sized cities and towns, participative democracy and civil society.

Before becoming Director of IPPR North in May 2018, Sarah worked for the think-tank as a Senior Research Fellow, taking the lead on ground-breaking work including a ‘Great North Plan’ a ‘Natural Assets Strategy for the North’ and collaboration with the People’s Powerhouse movement.

Prior to joining IPPR 2016, she worked as a Director of Policy at the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES), based in Manchester, and she began her career working in local Government, in Durham and North Yorkshire.

Sarah holds a PhD in Urban Studies from the University of Glasgow where she examined the dominant influence of the economic growth narrative on the work of planning authorities in the UK and particularly how it alters attitudes to people and place.  

Sarah believes passionately in the importance of speaking on behalf of the people and places that have so far been left out of the Northern Powerhouse debate. She makes regular appearances in the media, and is a regular speaker at key conferences and events.

Sarah on BBC Sunday Politics North East

Recent work