Phil Swan is the 2018 Digital Leaders Local Champion for the North West

Written by Louise Stokes, Director at Digital Leaders

As part of this year’s DL100 Awards, we once again asked each of our 12 Regions to name their choice of DL Local Champion for 2018, and the names are in. Once more, they reflect the cross-sector community that make up Digital Leaders in the UK. We have representatives from SMEs, Central and Local Government, Academia, Charities and Enterprise.


Phil Swan is the 2018 Digital Leaders Local Champion for the North West! Phil leads the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s extended Digital Team that collaborates with public and private sector partners across the city region to drive economic growth and social impact. Working closely with the ten GM localities and the Health & Social Care Partnership, the Digital Team is focussed on delivering the GM Digital Strategy which was crowdsourced in 2017 through two #GMdigital Mayoral Summits and events led by Andy Burnham, the Greater Manchester Mayor.

The current scope of work is one of the broadest in the country and incredibly exciting, including:

  • a £40m fibre broadband investment programme that will seed wider investment and make GM the fibre capital of the UK;
  • a ground breaking public service digitisation programme that will have huge impacts in several areas including health visiting, school readiness and victims services;
  • a city region data sharing strategy which is being guided by resident feedback from over 1,000 interviews across all of Greater Manchester;
  • an industry linked drive to create whole new digital skills and talent pipeline that will offer new opportunities and support Greater Manchester’s fast expanding digital economy;
  • establishing a new Cyber Innovation Centre for Greater Manchester and the North.

Phil believes wholeheartedly in the philosophy underpinning the GMCA’s Digital Team: “Big enough to matter, small enough to know each other, and hungry enough to make things happen quickly” and feels incredibly fortunate to work with some amazing people, across all sectors, who are combining their talents with digital opportunities to create a better Greater Manchester for the people of the city region.


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