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Scottish Enterprise’s contribution to economic inclusion: final report


Scottish Enterprise’s contribution to economic inclusion aimed to narrow the gap between the Scottish and other comparative economies; and spread the benefits of growth. The evaluation aimed to generate a clearer focus and promote a better use of resources; contribute to the ongoing re-engineering of the national training programmes; provide the basis for considering potential new products or services; and guide a process of rationalising activities.


The methodology consisted of: questionnaires about each individual inclusion activity; discussions with LEC staff with responsibilities for inclusion; an analysis of the Network’s evaluation evidence and the management information system requirements; and a workshop with Network staff.


Notes the substantial contribution made by SE’s inclusion spend. Finds that issues with inclusion activities include: a lack of focus in addressing market failures and contributing to key strategic themes and targets; insufficient attention to sustaining clients once in employment; the dependence of inclusion activity on LEC discretionary funds; a large proportion of small scale project activity; a lack of strong partnerships with Jobcentre Plus and Communities Scotland, and lack of full integration with Careers Scotland. Highlights examples of good practice products and processes. Observes that the Network has become better at bringing inclusion projects and activities into the mainstream. Mentions there is insufficient information on intervention cost effectiveness.


Recommends that there needs to be early agreement on appropriate focus for activities and the mainstreaming of inclusion efforts. Suggests that SE needs to: embed key employability enhancement processes within Training for Work; place other effective interventions on a secure funding basis; create a budget line / fund and new tool to appraise ‘infrastructure’ development; release resources for the explicit funding of R & D; deliver a more hard-edged approach to partnership working; review referral and tracking processes and systems; assess the effectiveness of new approaches; and adopt more rigorous inclusion performance measurements.

Author Alan McGregor, Andrea Glass, Andy Hirst (Cambridge Policy Consultants)
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Equity
    Equal opportunities
  • Labour Market and Skills
    Economic Inclusion