John Dowie joined the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority in August 2022 as Executive Director of Infrastructure and Place. He leads the MCA’s work on transport (including South Yorkshire bus and tram system, the encouragement of active travel and the region’s input to the development of the national rail and road networks). He also has responsibility for South Yorkshire’s policies and delivery on housing, flooding and carbon reduction.
Prior to this, John had a varied civil service career starting out in the UK Atomic Energy Authority, with periods in the Department of Energy, Department of Trade & Industry, HM Treasury, the Scottish Government and the Government Office for the East of England. More recently, he spent 10 years in the Department for Transport, leading on local transport from 2006 to 2013 and then from 2013 to 2015 as Director of Strategic Roads, establishing Highways England and producing the first Roads Investment Strategy. His last role in DfT was as Interim Director-General for all the department’s work on motoring, roads and local transport.
In 2016 John joined First Bus as Director to support partnership working across 14 operational companies. Over his time with the company, he dealt with the varied and interlinked challenges of the Bus Services Act 2017, air quality, road congestion and decarbonisation; with the National Bus Strategy and the financial challenges of Covid taking centre stage from 2020 onwards.