Goldsmiths, University of London launch Civic University Agreement in collaboration with 11 local anchor institutions.

Based in the London Borough of Lewisham in south east London, Goldsmiths, University of London is today launching a Civic University Agreement co-designed with 11 other organisations in the area, focused on addressing local needs.

The 12 anchor institutions have signed a new agreement to work together to boost employment, education, health and the environment across the borough.

The partners in the Civic University Agreement (CUA) are: Goldsmiths, University of London, The Albany, The Horniman Museum and Gardens, Lewisham College, Lewisham Council, Lewisham Local, Lewisham Homes, Phoenix Community Housing, 999 Museum, The Migration Museum, Trinity Laban and Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust.

The agreement aims to unlock the partners’ shared potential by co-creating and delivering initiatives for the good of the local area and third of a million people living in Lewisham. It comes as the government’s “levelling up” policy focuses on areas outside of London despite the ongoing need for more support for communities like Lewisham.

Local people were asked about their priorities and needs in improving the lives of people living, working and studying in Lewisham. Four key themes were identified and will inform the work of the agreement:

  • Educational opportunities and supporting learning aspiration
  • Economic prosperity, jobs and growth
  • Culture, Health and Well-being
  • Environmental Sustainability

There are also plans to deliver law and wellbeing “street clinics” which will offer advice and information to local people at drop-in events, with other projects in development.

The CUA was initiated by Goldsmiths as part of the university’s ambition to make a difference to its home borough and make it easier for local people to access the university’s services and expertise, and developed in collaboration with the 11 partner organisations.

The full Civic University Agreement can be read here:

Professor Frances Corner, Warden of Goldsmiths said: “The challenges facing Lewisham are stark. We have been hit hard by the pandemic, feel the impact of the climate emergency in the air we breathe and have to deal with the consequences of entrenched poverty and inequality every day.

“With the government’s ‘levelling up’ policy clearly focused outside of London these 12 organisations are joining together to take action and make life better in our home borough. We are incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by talented, hard-working and passionate people and this new agreement will provide opportunity for residents and business to grow and thrive.”

Dr Michael Eades is Head of Civic Engagement at Goldsmiths, University of London

Read the full Civic University Agreement here

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Dr Michael Eades

Twitter @DrMichaelEades