Leadership - 237 'Vital and Viable' Factors

As part of our series on vital and viable high streets, the High Streets Task Force is presenting 'evidence on a page' summaries of over 200 factors that influence the success of high streets. Here we address leadership: leadership refers to the capacity of the coming together of actors across multiple networks to generate future-oriented spatial visions and realise collaborative governance ambitions.

Date added 10 November 2021
Last updated 10 November 2021

Place leadership is now seen as an “interactive and collective form of agency shaping” (Sotarauta, 2018: 198). Thus, understanding the role of place leadership particularly in the local and regional contexts is imperative in order to work towards common visions and goals, and ensuring that a culture of transformative change is embedded in people in order to play to a place’s strengths. 

Sotarauta (2015) asks the following questions that can guide your mapping of place-based leadership: 

1. Who are the leaders?

2. The relationship between institutions/governance structures and leadership?

3. Can leaders make a difference or is it illusionary?

4. Strategies and capacities?

5. How do leaders emerge and learn their skills?

Answering these questions for your location can give you a head-start into focussing on the elements of place leadership (resources, networks, technologies, people, knowledge, ideas, vision) that you want to adapt in order to achieve your long-term goals. 

Leadership is one of 237 factors that have been identified as influencing the vitality and viability of the high street.

For more information and further reading, download the pdf 'evidence on a page'. The page contains information about this factors place within the 237 factors identified and: whether it is a component factor of one of 25 'vital and viable' priorities; how the factor scores in terms of influence, place management control, and priority.

To read more about vital and viable high streets, see www.highstreetstaskforce.org.uk/frameworks/25-vital-and-viable-priorities/