Editor’s message and January/February 2017 magazine download

Hold onto your hats because 2017 is set to be an interesting and exciting year as the infrastructure sector takes centre stage, says Andy Walker in his editor's comment in the latest edition of Infrastructure Intelligence.

If you thought that last year was interesting and challenging then you might have to hold onto your hats in 2017, as the industry gets to grips with a shedload of issues including the continuing ramifications of the EU’s vote to leave the EU, the start of the Brexit negotiations, questions over the certainty of the infrastructure pipeline and the effects of a Trump presidency on the world economy.

There’s no question that any of the above could have an effect on the infrastructure sector and, whether we like it or not, political events in the UK and abroad are sure to impact on the industry and give rise to uncertainty over the next 12 months. However, there will also be opportunities and many of our contributors in this issue refer to those as they look forward to the year ahead.

We asked a series of industry leaders to highlight some of the key issues and questions facing businesses in 2017 (pages 3-5) and found a large degree of optimism about the future. Change seems certain to be an ever-present during the coming year and it’s a theme referred to by both Ramboll’s Mathew Riley (page 8) and Mott MacDonald’s Mike Haigh (Page 10) in their interviews with us.

Despite the Brexit uncertainty, it’s clear that the UK is still seen as a great place to do business, a fact underlined by US super-consultant Louis Berger’s decision to move their international HQ from Paris to London (page 14). 

Investment in infrastructure will play a key role in the government’s plans to rebalance the economy and increase economic prosperity and on pages 16-18 we profile a new initiative, based on industry research and opinion, which will help raise the profile and importance of economic and social infrastructure to the future of the UK.

In 2016, at long last infrastructure started to be seen by government as a potential key driver of the economy. We need to make 2017 the year when the sector - and its people – delivers on that potential by working with government, locally and nationally, to help bring about real change and 

Andy Walker is the editor of Infrastructure Intelligence.

Click here to download the January/February 2017 edition of the magazine.

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