Tag: capacity building

Building R&I capacity in the East Midlands

Local authorities in the East Midlands have been spending considerable time collating datasets for strategic assessment and service improvement. Responsibility for collation is typically spread across a range of services in councils (and partners) creating the risk of duplication. Data managers and their teams have been carrying out large amounts of work to repackage nationally available data for local needs.Analytical capacity has been stretched by such demands and available data are not always used to the full. Research and intelligence has not always been joined up where and when it matters – within local authorities and across partners.Derrick Johnstone was commissioned by the East Midlands Improvement and Efficiency Partnership to undertake a scoping project to:
  • clarify common needs for improved access to, and use of data, including the use of tools such as MOSAIC, ACORN and OAC (ONS) and the resources of regional and sub-regional observatories
  • identify the potential for further pan-regional collaboration, including ways of developing and making better use of regional and sub-regional R&I infrastructure
  • assess models for joint use and acquisition of Customer Insight packages, along with potential savings through joint procurement arrangements
  • identify priorities for learning and sharing good practice, to inform the future work of the Improvement and Efficiency Partnership
The report (available for download) provided the basis for regional consultation, and led to the East Midlands Customer Insight and Research project, on which Derrick acted as an advisor. This project had two strands: one to developing skills and networks relating to research and analysis; the other a series of sub-regional demonstration projects applying customer insight and research methods in seeking to raise aspirations and the reduce the numbers of young people who are NEET (not in education, employment or training).

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=240

Inspire East evaluation 2007

Inspire East Evaluation 200( pdf 1203KB) – assessment of the impact of the regional centre of excellence for sustainable communities in the East of England. Follows work on the evaluation framework and baseline in 2006.

This involved research into the impact of Inspire East services (seminars and workshops, publications, website, etc) and wider influence of Inspire East on policy and practice in the region.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=118

City Growth Strategies

Advisory role as member of national Resource Team (2002-04) for City Growth Strategies (CGS) – a national pilot programme, funded by the Small Business Service of the Department of Trade and Industry (now BIS). CGS promoted a market-led approach to turning round disadvantaged areas, concentrating on economic potential rather than social problems. Key features included: giving business a leading role in strategy development; ensuring a robust evidence base; and capitalising on business clusters to drive productivity improvements and local prosperity.Treasury and DTI backing for CGS was inspired by Michael Porter and Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) in the USA. The national CGS programme sought to spread lessons from the pilots and draw on US ideas and experience.Nottingham, Plymouth, St Helens, and four parts of London were selected to take part in the first round in 2001, followed in a second round by Derby, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Luton, Manchester, Portsmouth, and three more parts of London.Overview of CGS prepared for Renewal.net ( pdf  83KB), plus case studies of Nottingham ( pdf  76KB) and St Helens ( pdf  84KB).

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=207

Skill Standards for Economic Development

Occupational Standards for Economic Development ( pdf 130 KB) report for the then Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) on four development projects which made productive use of occupational standards (standards of competence) to improve capacity for local economic development, practitioner skills and partnership effectiveness.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=206

Skills for Community Regeneration

Skills for Regeneration: Learning by Community Champions – report on research into skills needed and gained by individuals who have gained small grants through the Community Champions programme, funded by the Department for Education and Skills. The programme provided up to £2,000 to around 10,000 individuals across England between 2000 and 2007, with many projects led by these individuals targeted at disadvantaged groups, including disabled people and refugees. The programme was successful, but was one of the funding streams ultimately to be rolled into funding for Local Area Agreements. Report (RR441) and Research Brief (summary) (RB441) available for download from the Department for Education.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=196

Supporting Local Information and Research

Research for CLG (Department for Communities and Local Government) into factors driving changes in information, analysis and research in local government and how local, regional and national partners have been responding to these (with Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion – OCSI – and Demographic Decisions). Recommendations related to:

  • streamlining and opening up access to data
  • improved packaging of datasets and analyses to meet user needs
  • action to avoid pitfalls in accessing and comparing data from related websites
  • improvements in national indicator sets to reflect what is needed and measurable at locality and neighbourhood levels
  • promotion of good practice in data sharing and use of geodemographic classifications
  • action to develop skills amongst researchers and analysts, including a skills framework and support for use of applications such as cost benefit analysis – as well as steps to encourage ‘intelligent customers’, influencing how decision-makers view and use what analysts have to offer
  • embedding local research and analysis functions in the search for improved services and outcomes in local authorities and partnerships
The report  (1,996 KB) was published by CLG in January 2009. The recommendations have been worked through in a number of contexts, including at national level involving the LGA, CLG, Audit Commission, etc. The report has influenced the work of Improvement and Efficiency Partnerships and decisions taken at local level to strengthen R&I capacity and collaboration. Derrick Johnstone facilitated a national workshop in December 2009 to review progress against recommendations.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.educe.co.uk/?p=183