A think-tank is to be set up to come up with ideas to bring about a better Brighton and Hove.
A local charity – the Pebble Trust – came up with the proposal and will fund almost half the £650,000 annual running cost of the think-tank – to be called Better Brighton and Hove.
The think-tank will bring together academics from Brighton University and Sussex University and policy experts from Brighton and Hove City Council and other local organisations.
It could also bring experience and expertise from the business world when trying to find ways to tackle some of the pressing challenges facing the area, the council hopes.
On Thursday (13 October) the council agreed to contribute £250,000 a year although this could be the nominal cost of providing premises and staff.
It is hoped that Sussex Police, the universities, the NHS and private businesses may contribute up to £50,000.
The charity behind the think-tank – the Pebble Trust – was set up seven years ago by three trustees – a Hove couple, Jamie and Louise Arnell, and solicitor Louise Stoten.
Mr Arnell is a partner in the venture capital firm Charterhouse. He and Mrs Arnell met at university – at Downing College, Cambridge – and have been described as passionate about putting something back into their home town.
Council chief executive Geoff Raw will be one of the think-tank’s seven trustees. It is hoped that he will be joined by the vice-chancellors of Sussex and Brighton universities.
The council’s contribution to the running costs was approved by its Policy, Resources and Growth Committee at Hove Town Hall on Thursday evening.
The meeting was told that the think-tank’s aims were
It is hoped that, through the think-tank, the council will be able to “access additional resources, capacity and expertise to analyse and tackle priority issues in the city” that would be available to charities but not to local authorities.