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Place Leadership Panel Discussion

A West of Scotland Chapter Event

Wednesday, 01 June 2016 at 6:00PM - 8:30PM
Williams Room, IET Teacher Building, 14 St Enoch Square, Glasgow, G1 4DB
RTPI Scotland

Leadership has an important role to play in supporting better design policy and enabling better development outcomes, particularly in the ongoing climate of austerity. Research on the design dimension of planning has tended to focus on how various design tools and mechanisms are used to enable better design, but has paid rather less attention to the leadership role that particular actors play in progressing design agendas. In this roundtable discussion, the questions of ‘leadership’ will be addressed by the panel members. The discussion will explore the changing role of place leadership in planning over time, as well as reflecting on why leadership is important and how successful leadership is executed.

The event will be chaired by Dr. James White, Lecturer in Urban Design, University of Glasgow. Our panel will be:

  • Professor Trevor Davies, an honorary professor of Urban Studies in the University of Glasgow and was Convener of the Planning Committee of the City of Edinburgh Council from 2003-07.
  • Graham Ross, a Partner of Austin-Smith Lord LLP; is an architect and urban designer based in Glasgow and involved in projects throughout the UK and Ireland. Graham is Deputy Chair of A&DS’s Advisory Board on which he has served since 2006.
  • Steven Tolson, Director of Healthcare and Housing Services at CDLH Chartered Surveyors and has considerable leadership experience in regeneration, property development and placemaking.
  • Gordon Watson, Chief Executive at Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park is a planner with a background in economic and rural development, tourism and in securing inward investment development.

This event is hosted in partnership between RTPI West of Scotland Chapter, Glasgow University Governance and Space Group with the support of the Urban Design Group.

If you would like to submit questions in advance of the evening, please send these to

This is a free event. There will be a wine reception from 6pm, with the panel discussion starting prompty at 6:30pm.

Booking information

Please contact the West of Scotland Chapter to register your place.