Sue joined the Heseltine Institute for Public Policy, Practice and Place at the University of Liverpool in 2019 as Co-Director. Sue has a professional background in local government practice and public policy. She has senior leadership experience of delivering public services, including complex programmes where activities are undertaken by partners across multiple agencies. A former director at Liverpool City Region (LCR) Combined Authority and Knowsley Council, Sue is a leading expert on public policy, employment and skills and local economic development strategies. Notably, Sue coordinated the strategic governance review to create LCR Combined Authority in 2014, negotiated the skills aspects of LCR’s Devolution Deal, led the Area Based Review of Further Education and successfully devolved £51m Adult Education Budget to the Combined Authority. Between 2010 and 2017 Sue was Knowsley Council’s Director of Policy and led the development of new strategies, service transformation and place-based collaborations involving local residents, public and private sector partners.
Sue’s research interests span English devolution, place-based economic development, skills strategies, and public service reform. At the Heseltine Institute Sue leads engagement across local and regional stakeholders to align academic research with policymaking to explore critical public policy challenges and choices facing cities and city regions. Her role includes working as academic advisor to the Liverpool City Region All Party Parliamentary Group, evaluating the impact of national policies on local prosperity and leading key agendas of civic engagement. Since joining the Heseltine Institute, Sue has secured and delivered research grant and consultancy from UKRI, the British Academy and the Local Government Association for place-based collaborations involving local communities, policymakers and practitioners that support economic or social impacts.