Post columnist David Bailey is returning to Birmingham after he was named Aston Business School’s new professor of industrial strategy.
Professor Bailey, an influential expert on West Midlands manufacturing, has become a respected voice on economic restructuring and industrial policy through his Post columns.
He has now left his former role at Coventry University to take up the new job, but will continue research work into the region’s supply chain and ‘re-shoring’.
As an author and regular media commentator, Mr Bailey has become a well-known face, commenting on issues like the closure of Longbridge and Jaguar Land Rover’s recent success story.
He has also undertaken European-funded research on using foreign investment to boost industries such as the low carbon vehicles cluster in the region.
Mr Bailey said the move would allow him to continue and enhance his work.
He said: “It was a chance to work with some excellent academics and continue my work in automotive and supply chains.
“Coventry was a fantastic place to work, and I will be doing similar work and similar teaching, but there are some great people here and it is nice to be back in Birmingham.
“There is a lot going on at the moment, like what sort of industrial policies we need, and I have been doing a lot of work lately about ‘re-shoring’ – how far it has gone and how we can encourage more.
“And there are so many opportunities for the region following the upturn of the sector and Jaguar Land Rover’s growth.”
Prof Bailey has recently worked on a project for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills on developing a framework to assist local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) in responding to economic ‘shocks’ and restructuring.
He has twice chaired the Regional Studies Association, and has acted as a special adviser to the House of Commons Select Committee on the West Midlands region, presenting to a number of select committees and All Party Parliamentary Groups.
He has also been a non-executive director at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust from 2006-2013.
Professor George Feiger, executive dean of Aston Business School, said Prof Bailey would strengthen the university’s focus on partnerships with businesses.
More than 200 firms target Aston for their graduate recruitment each year and executives from the likes of BMW, Deutsche Bank and Goodyear Dunlop have worked with its students.
Prof Feiger added: “I am delighted to welcome David to Aston Business School. He brings with him a wealth of experience and specialist knowledge which will enhance and strengthen our academic and business partnerships and enrich the teaching experience of our students.”
l Post columnist Lord Kumar Bhattacharyya has been honoured by India’s president for his services to industry.
Professor Bhattacharyya, the chairman and founder of Warwick Manufacturing Group, was handed an honorary award from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bhubaneswar by the president, Shri Pranab Mukherjee.
The Moseley-based industrialist, who was born in Dhaka but has gone on to establish himself as one of the UK’s most eminent manufacturing experts, was given an honourary degree at the ceremony.
Lord Bhattacharyya has been widely recognised for founding WMG at the University of Warwick in 1980.
He was awarded a knighthood in 2003 for services to higher education and industry and was elevated to the House of Lords in 2004.