Birmingham has a long and successful track record of engagement in Europe:
- We lead on European funding, including providing advice and guidance to council departments and external partners on European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) and transnational EU programmes. Examples of how the city uses EU funding can be found here. This results in the City and partners accessing several million pounds of grant a year for the benefit of citizens and business.
- We are responsible for Birmingham’s relations with its four European partner cities: Frankfurt, Leipzig, Lyon and Milan.
- We co-ordinate our engagement in the EUROCITIES network. Birmingham is a founder member of EUROCITIES which represents over 130 of Europe’s largest cities and is a widely respected urban network for lobbying and influencing on issues of EU policy and funding.
- We also have our own representation at the heart of Europe through our Greater Birmingham and West Midlands Brussels office whose aim is to support the city and partners to secure funding and to develop stronger links with EU institutions and decision-makers.
The Europe Association aims to bring organisations in Birmingham together where there are gaps in local European collaboration and where there are future opportunities which will lead to greater reputation building for Birmingham and grant capture. Its priorities are:
- Deepening exchange, exposure and partnerships.
- Maximising large-scale, pan-European initiatives to support the development of Birmingham’s key growth sectors.
- Supporting the city’s competitiveness and innovation agenda though European working.
- Developing greater joined-up working among local partners, as well as closer working with our ambassadors in Europe to further enhance Birmingham’s reputation and influence.