The Economy and Skills Group aims to understand the key issues and opportunities in Warwickshire’s economy and the needs of our local businesses in order to develop, shape and inform relevant strategies, policies, funding programmes, services and activities that will help grow the economy to the benefit of our residents.
We produce a range of research and reports, often on behalf of partners or other County Council services. Our latest work includes:
Warwickshire’s Productivity Report (2017) – This report reviews Office of National Statistics data, which places Warwickshire amongst the fastest growing local authorities in the UK. The paper discusses the current UK ‘productivity puzzle’ before examining why Warwickshire has become a driver in productivity growth since the onset of the recent recession. Finally, it considers the implications this strong growth may have on the county’s future economic well-being.
Area Profiles (2015) – These reports summarise the main business and economic headline indicators to provide an economic overview of each District and Borough in Warwickshire. Key challenges and opportunities for growth are also identified for each area.
An economic review of Warwick District – A detailed paper commissioned by Warwick District Council. The paper explores the current structure of Warwick District’s economy by concentrating on the following: the business base; the labour market & population; and local economic competitiveness. Economic forecast analysis summarises the strengths and weaknesses facing Warwick District and makes key strategic recommendations.
Warwickshire’s Rural Profile – A joint project with Warwickshire Observatory on behalf of the Regeneration and Infrastructure Group. The report considered the contribution of the rural economy to economic growth in the county. Analysis was undertaken at lower super-output area (LSOA) level using the 2011 rural-urban definition provided by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Broader indicators were also considered including natural environment, population, health, and life expectancy.
UK Central – Research on behalf of the Transport Planning Group which considered the economic opportunities of the UK Central major development and how Warwickshire could benefit from improved connectivity to the area. The report considered economic forecast data, demographics, commuter flows, and business activity as well as existing and future links with the main investment zones.
Economic analysis to inform the Coventry and Warwickshire Area review – A joint project with Coventry City Council on behalf of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP). The report considered the current and future economic performance of Coventry and Warwickshire’s labour market by observing labour supply and demand changes in the sub-region. It also identified areas of future resilience and vulnerability in the labour market, and the implications for the Government’s post-16 area reviews.
Low-wage sectors and improving productivity in Warwickshire – The report examined the current and future performance of Warwickshire’s economy by focusing on low-wage industries that suffer from poor productivity. The research concluded that prioritising growth policies towards low-wage sectors could make a significant contribution to closing the “productivity gap” with the UK by 2025, therefore, increasing job creation locally.
We have also supported WCC services including Transport Planning, Regeneration and Infrastructure, Flood Risk and Water Management and CSW Broadband with the preparation of business cases and funding applications.
Quarterly Labour Market Bulletin
We also produce a quarterly labour market bulletin. The bulletin considers issues such as the latest employment and unemployment data, economic activity and inactivity rates and real-time demand in the labour market. The information is usually presented at District/ Borough level as well as for the wider Coventry and Warwickshire sub-region and West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) area.
The first issue is now live and further data will be published each quarter when the latest labour market data is available.
Warwickshire Means Business
We also make regular contributions to the County Council’s business newsletter, Warwickshire Means Business.
Local Economic Assessment
As a result of legislation contained within the 2010 Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act, local authorities are required to undertake an assessment of the performance of their local economy. These “Local Economic Assessments” aim to provide local authorities and partners with a common understanding of the local economic conditions, which in turn can shape and inform a range of local strategies and policies.
Given the strong relationship and interdependencies between Coventry and Warwickshire’s economy, it was decided that a single Local Economic Assessment should be undertaken covering this functional economic area. The Coventry and Warwickshire Economic Assessment was published in March 2011:
In support of this Economic Assessment, a number of supporting topic papers were also developed. These provide additional data and analysis on particular key issues.