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Research Associate, Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies (CURDS), Newcastle University

Peter O'Brien was formerly the Director of Tyne and Wear City Region, a role he undertook for four and a half years until May 2012. During his time at the Tyne and Wear City Region, Peter was one of the key individuals responsible for the inception and development of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (NELEP). Between January 2011 and May 2012, Peter led the Interim NELEP Secretariat, where he oversaw detailed work on: the recruitment of the LEP Chair and Board; the new generation of Enterprise Zones in the region; implementation of the Growing Places Fund Programme; and a wide range of sub-national economic development functions NELEP is now responsible for discharging within the North East of England. Previously, Peter was the Assistant Chief Executive of the North East Assembly, where he was responsible for Regional Economic Strategy (RES) Scrutiny, European Strategy, Social Policy and NEA Business and Financial Planning. He has also worked as a Policy Officer for the Trades Union Congress (TUC) in the North East providing strategy advice to the Northern TUC and its constituent trade unions on all matters concerning regional and local economic development. A former Newcastle University doctoral student, based at the Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies (CURDS), Peter has an active research and policy interest in questions relating to economic development, regeneration, sub-national/local governance infrastructure funding and financing, and labour markets.


  • –present
    Visiting Fellow, Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies (CURDS), Newcastle University