Briefing: The importance of industrial growth and innovation in local authority approaches to supporting local economic growth

Local authorities (LAs) need to understand the industries and services locally that can generate economic and employment growth, and to encourage innovations to that end

Traditional intervention models focused on inward investment, public subsidy (even of infrastructure), and traditional manufacturing industries are unlikely to be successful and enduring in the current economic and public policy climate

Rather a more sophisticated and nuanced approach is needed. This will build on local assets and capabilities through integrated measures (skills, infrastructure, enterprise and innovation), strong strategic leadership, institutional capabilities and competence

There are a plethora of national and EU opportunities to support a local approach – but they are fragmented, complex and overlapping in terms of sectors, geographies, and types of support. Local authorities need to work with LEPs, business and university/R&D partners to tailor their local approach to access these opportunities.

This briefing will be of particular interest to LA policy makers in all tiers of council (both member and officer), economic development teams, and those engaging with LEPs, city deals and economic components of whole area budgets. It is one of a series of briefings focusing on local economics and growth issues.

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