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Ex-post evaluation of the Lowland Scotland LEADER II Community Initiative: final report


The Lowland Scotland LEADER II programme aimed to promote local development and prioritise activities that met the LEADER II criteria of innovation, demonstrable and transferable. The evaluation aimed to: assess the programme’s performance in terms of its qualitative and quantitative outputs and consider the structural, institutional, economic and other constraints affecting the implementation of LEADER II.


The methodology consisted of: desk-based research and analysis; consultations with Programme Management, Local Action Group (LAG) co-ordinator and members; and surveys of project beneficiaries.


Finds that the LEADER II initiative was of significant value for Lowland Scotland and considerably improved the development of local and innovative partnership processes and actions. The programme has performed well against its core ‘Headline’ indicators. A more specific definition of ‘innovation’ would have been appreciated. The implementation of the Global Grant and its delivery mechanism was one of the most successful features of the programme.


At European level, recommends that: the Global Grant mechanism remains a feature; approvals of budget alterations are processed more quickly; qualitative indicators and targets should be legitimate results for community based programmes; more clarity should be introduced in the objectives and rationales of LEADER II themes; a thematically focused approach should be pursued; and the emphasis on innovation should be reduced and its definition refined. At Programme level, recommends that SE should: maintain the extent of support and resources provided for LAGs; continue the Scottish LEADER Network; consider pre-match capacity building and transnational co-operation measures; fully access resources made available through the European Observatory; provide clear guidance; extend high quality programme monitoring systems; undertake project monitoring beyond the end of the Programme; and transfer and mainstream innovative pilot actions. At local level, recommends that: community representation on LAGs is extended; members should be encouraged to participate in LAG decision-making processes; project achievements are identified, monitored and reported; monitoring data is reviewed more regularly; and project aftercare services are employed to improve monitoring.

Author EKOS Limited
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Business infrastructure
    Local/community regeneration
  • Equity
    Rural Development