Marc Eatough is Lead Policy Manager at the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership. He has worked in economic development for nearly 20 years, including roles as Economic Development Officer at Durham County Council and Southampton City Council, interspersed with research and business development remits at Newcastle and Southampton universities and in private consultancy. Marc, who took up his current position in August 2014, has been an IED member since the start of his career in 1999.
“When I began working for Durham County Council I was recommended to join the IED to support my CPD and help the overall quality structures at the Council,” recalled Marc, whose current brief is primarily focused on economic strategy, project appraisal and bid development. “At that time there was a very active North-East branch of the IED, with lots of field trips and workshops, and I have retained my individual membership ever since as the primary way to keep up-to-date with what is going on in the sector.”
Reflecting on almost two decades as an IED member, Marc said the opportunity to meet with professionals and peers has been the most beneficial experience. “The key role of the IED is helping to get people together outside of the day job, and I have had great value from this over the years in terms of networking and meeting fellow practitioners away from traditional presentations,” he explained. “Whilst the annual conference is great, the recent Cushman and Wakefield event in Leeds on how to make the case for public sector funding in infrastructure and property is a good example of how the IED can bring people together locally. Given the breadth of its membership, the IED also has clear value in facilitating the public/private sector interface and working together on similar agendas.”
Marc will take up a new challenge in December 2018 when he joins the Research & Innovation Directorate at the University of Leeds. “I intend to remain a member of the IED because I like its proactive approach to knowledge sharing, including Bulletin which is really good, and also how the IED helps the development and exposure of member needs,” he said. “More peer-to-peer opportunities can only be good, and the IED has a crucial role to play in bringing together different organisations to share knowledge and expertise, including those in the HE sector which is critical for economic development.”