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Anthropy 23: Nurturing future leaders for a better Britain

Planning | News

In a bid to shape the future of Britain, Anthropy 23 opened its doors to more than 150 people aged 18-30, recognising them as emerging leaders who will play a pivotal role in the nation’s trajectory over the next 30 years.

Among the attendees were George Smith, principal planner at Marrons, Alice Gibson, family solicitor at Shakespeare Martineau and Abigail Lynch, trainee solicitor at Shakespeare Martineau who share their experience.

With Anthropy initially attracting seasoned leaders, the emerging leaders programme ensures the inclusion of younger voices.

“Making an effort to include and empower younger voices will enable those in the early stages of their careers to feel motivated to be brave and take action to make their ideas a reality,” says Alice.”

“Without creating a space for emerging leaders, there is a risk that the voices heard at conferences such as Anthropy represent a narrow pool of views already in positions of leadership and influence.”

George adds: “The curiosity of youth was key to many of the discussions at the event, as well as the importance of collaboration between emerging and current leaders for creating diverse thought.”

At the event, the programme provided a platform for those who are stepping into leadership roles within their respective sectors and organisations, and enabled them to address the pressing concerns shaping their lives and the legacy they aspire to build for future generations.”


“The importance of the emerging leaders’ stream cannot be understated,” says Abigail.

“The success of gatherings such as Anthropy stems from the coming together of leaders to exchange ideas about the future, bringing about collaborative efforts to drive change.”

George’s perspective

“With an open mind and an eagerness to be inspired, learn and give knowledge, I got so much out of the experience, which I will take forward in my work and personal life.”

“It was great to speak to complete strangers while waiting for a coffee next to exotic birds in the rainforest or trying to stay on two skates in the ice rink, pretending to be a natural.”

“Being open to the elements – literally with the wind and rain – and wildlife at the Eden Project really sparked imagination about what Britain could, and should, look like in 2063, where biodiversity, culture, spirit, sustainability and the power of youth should be at the epicentre.”

“It was the perfect environment to harness creative, powerful thought about where this country needs to be. So many leaders across health, education, business, media, and politics shared ideas and let curiosities run free.”

“I made some fantastic personal and professional connections and hope to collaborate with the brilliant minds that I engaged with. Here’s hoping Britain can replicate this environment now and into the future.”

Alice’s journey

“My time at Anthropy was enriching and horizon-broadening. I really enjoyed stepping out of my comfort zone by going to talks and workshops on new areas of interest.”

“I particularly drew confidence and inspiration from the Brandpie ‘emerging leaders’ workshops. I found these helped me to begin to think about my role and how I can make a meaningful difference as I develop throughout my career.”

“The importance of collaboration and courage in pioneering new ways to carry out sustainable and responsible business was a hot topic. If you spot an opportunity to do business in a better way, that has a more positive impact on the planet and the community, try your best to put that in place.”

“Don’t be afraid to break out of your area of experience to find new ways of looking at things and understanding different perspectives. Talk to those around you, even from backgrounds that may not traditionally complement your own, to see if you have shared experiences and can find new ways to problem-solve together.”

Abigail’s inspirations

“Having the opportunity to listen to so many inspiring speakers, to meet new people and to share insights and exchange ideas was eye opening.”

“The younger workforce contingent has the potential to bring a diverse perspective to the discussion of how we can progress and improve as a nation. It is therefore incredibly important to empower and nurture emerging leaders, to give them the opportunity to learn and grow as they assist in cultivating positive change for the future generations.”

“One of my main takeaways following the conference relates to mentality. I heard from so many inspiring people about their journeys and how they remained resilient and positive when faced with any adversity along the way. The conference reminded me of the importance to lead with a positive attitude when trying to drive change.”

“Attending Anthropy as an emerging leader has inspired me to re-examine my approach to responsible business and how we can excel in building a better future together. I will now try to continue to learn from my peers, to take on more opportunities to collaborate to move forward as a nation.”

Published: 29th January 2024
Area: Anthropy

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Marrons is a multi-service development consultancy backed by the experience of working for local authorities, extensive market intel and connections across the industry - from planning offices and private landowners to housebuilders and retailers.

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