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Impact Generation

Impact on local economic growth and governance

The objective of transforming the prospects of disadvantaged areas and promoting local economic growth has been a recurrent policy concern of successive governments. At CEEDR we have worked with all levels of government to help address the problem.

Policy development

We have helped to inform policy development in the area of local economic growth, working closely with the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG, formerly ODPM);other Government departments (including Business Innovation and Skills, Work and Pensionsand HM Treasury); and many local authorities and sub-national. Our work includes:

  • original empirical research;
  • reviews of the existing evidence base; and
  • evaluation of existing policies.

Our research findings have been influential for over a decade. Notable examples include:

  • Heseltine Review: Professor Stephen Syrett was an invited speaker to the Lord Heseltine Review on UK Competitiveness, in relation to the role of local areas in promoting economic growth (12 July 2012).
  • Advice to DCLG: Professor Stephen Syrett was appointed as a Member of Department of Communities and Local Government Expert Panel on 'Neighbourhoods, Cities and Regions Analysis' (NCRA) (2007-2010) and an invited expert in the DCLG Enquiry Week (March 2012) and other policy review events. Our work was also cited in the major restatement of the regeneration policy agenda by DCLG entitled Transforming places: Changing Lives. A Framework for Regeneration (2008).
  • Participation in the Review of Sub-National Economic Development and Regeneration (SNR) (2006-07), a major cross-governmental review led by HM Treasury. CEEDR submitted a written paper (November 2006)and our work is cited in the Review (2007). Professors North and Syrett were invited experts at successive HM Treasury workshops (July and October 2006).

Enterprise and work in the regeneration of deprived neighbourhoods

We have conducted a number of major reviews of the existing evidence about enterprise and work in regenerating deprived areas for the ODPM/DCLG, as well as undertaking original primary analysis for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and DCLG.

The impact of our work includes:

  • Local Enterprise Growth Initiative: Our research findings on the weak business base and entrepreneurial culture of deprived areas were taken forward in the design and introduction of a major government initiative in 2005 (£100m per year).
  • Production of think-pieces for DCLG and DWP: Professor Stephen Syrettwas commissioned to produce a think-piece on 'Tackling worklessness in deprived places', presented to a DWP/CLG seminar, and another on 'How the regeneration problem should be addressed', presented to a CLG 'Regeneration Futures' roundtable (August 2009).
  • Guidance related to Post Office closures in deprived areas: CEEDR research led to the publication of a widely circulated and cited good practice guide for Post Office diversification (2005).
  • Evidence presented to Scottish Parliament: Professors David North and Stephen Syrett were invited to present evidence to the Finance Committee of the Scottish Parliament as part of their cross-cutting review of expenditure on area based deprivation.

Governance and processes

Our research work has examined governance practices and processes related to local economic policy, and provided data for understanding the workings of local economies. Impacts include:

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