Historically a one-day event, in 2020 the Debates took place over a full week, using digital platforms and providing an opportunity for the Thames Valley business community to debate the impact – both present and future – of the COVID-19 pandemic. During a series of 9 sessions, themes ranging from Technology and The Future of Travel (imminent and medium-term) and Mental Health to A Scientific Perspective on COVID-19 and The Future of Trade with the USA were covered. The Chamber also hosted an MPs’ Roundtable and held a conversational session with Ambassador Robert Wood Johnson, US Ambassador to the UK.
Key conclusions from this event, which have informed TVCC’s 2021 Business Manifesto, included:
• The need for an integrated digital and physical infrastructure to support the rebuilding of the UK economy, including a carbon-neutral driven recovery, post COVID-19
• The need to work locally to retrain and reskill those who have been most impacted by the pandemic
• The need to work together to address the challenges of exiting the EU, e.g. product regulation.
• The need for inclusive recovery for all.
• Re-affirmation that the Chamber is well placed to be a (loud) voice of business for the Thames Valley region.
|Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE, President, British Chambers of Commerce (BCC)||Paul Britton, Chief Executive, Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce (TVCC)||Dr Katharina Hauck,
Reader in Health Economics at the Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Imperial College London
“Congratulations to everyone at the Chamber on the sessions you have put on… they have been – without exception – interesting and engaging.”
Andrew Barrett, Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
“Windsor Debates going brilliantly… Well done!”
Susan Matos, University of Reading
“…What a fabulous virtual Windsor Debates you produced. The session topics were spot on, the presenters superb with facilitators to match. The sessions I joined were all extremely informative and even better – they were very thought provoking. They were perfect.”
Sally Hanson, Sally Hanson Marketing Ltd