Mark Thomas - New Mayor for Auckland

Build Strong Private Sector And Government Relations

Greg Clarke is an internationally regarded adviser on cities and he has visited New Zealand several times to provide guidance on Auckland’s development. In a speech recently (article link at the bottom) he praised Manchester city in the UK for the role its private leadership was playing and for the city’s effectiveness in building relations with Central Government which have seen more resources provided to the city to help its development.

Greg said Manchester was an “emerging powerhouse” thanks to its innovative leadership. Manchester is currently the size of old Auckland City but has appointed an Interim Mayor for Greater Manchester as part of a UK Government initiated quasi amalgamation that is planned.

Auckland Council does not report on private sector leadership but the NZ Herald reports regularly on Central Government relations. Much of the approach Auckland’s current Mayor takes seems based around council’s (public sector) leadership. Council has a vital role in Auckland’s transport, land supply, council services and place-making. But as part of the Rules Reduction Taskforce work I have been doing, many “private sector” folk have spoken of their frustration with much of council’s leadership. At times it is crowding out and putting-off needed investment and engagement. Auckland’s next leader should take a leaf from Manchester’s book.

Learning From Manchester

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