Knowledge-sharing group set up foster collaboration and enhance transport and infrastructure planning will hold second meeting this month

The second meeting of the Northern Evidence Academic Forum is set to take place next week. The forum, set up by Transport for the North, brings together the region’s policy and decision-makers with the researchers who have the data that could help shape and enhance transport projects.

The collaborative approach to infrastructure planning and policymaking was spearheaded by TfN to ensure investment decisions are based on the most relevant and latest research and insights from across the North.

At the virtual meeting on Wednesday 12 May, speakers include:

  • Tom Jarvis, Senior Evidence and Analysis Officer at Transport for the North
  • Dr Caglar Koksal, Lecturer in the Department of Planning and Environmental Management at the University of Manchester
  • Dr Hadi Arbabi, Lecturer in the Department of Civil and Structural Engineering at the University of Sheffield
  • Professor Joyce Liddle, Professor of Public Leadership and Enterprise at Northumbria University
  • Professor John Shutt, Professor of Public Policy and Management at Northumbria University
  • Matt Smith, Consultant at Atkins
  • Dr Felicity Heathcote-Márcz, Ethnographer, Behaviours and Research Lead at Atkins

Topics to be discussed are:

  • How can urban planning help to create healthier and cleaner transport?
  • Long-term mobility planning and the tensions between density, mobility, and economic output
  • The visitor economy and transport in the North of England
  • The latest transport policy and governance research from Northumbria University


Tim Wood, Acting Chief Executive at Transport for the North, said:  “We’re delighted to be welcoming another group of industry-leading academics to present their latest research.

“As we’ve already seen, there is a wealth of evidence being gathered right across the North that can make the case for investing in the region’s infrastructure even more compelling. Transport for the North is well-placed to help bring that data in front of those who are making planning and investment decisions at the heart of Government.

“The collaboration on this Forum will all help to strengthen the case for investment, with the most up-to-date evidence on the difference better connectivity can deliver for our region’s people and businesses.”

Discussions and research from the forum will also be incorporated into TfN’s Northern Evidence Hub, an open and collaborative platform that hosts up-to-date evidence from a range of policy areas. The hub facilitates knowledge sharing across the region – ensuring that Northern policymakers can access robust evidence from a single location.

The Northern Evidence Academic Forum meets at 12pm on Wednesday 12 May on Microsoft Teams. Click here to register for your free ticket.