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Final project report: Scottish Enterprise Ayrshire Innovation Programme evaluation


The overall aim of SE Ayrshire’s innovation related assistance activities was to promote a culture of innovation amongst organisations by: raising awareness of the importance of innovation and creativity; providing opportunities to learn from world class experts in innovation and creativity; providing support to reduce cultural barriers to innovation; and increasing levels of innovation and creativity skills. The evaluation aimed to: assess the impact of the various programmes, together with determination of how the participating businesses and individuals have benefited; obtain participants’ feedback on the seminars, workshops and one-to-one assistance; and make recommendations for the future operation and management of these programmes.


The methodology consisted of: project scoping; an evaluation interview programme of 40 telephone and nine face-to-face interviews programme participants; briefing meetings and discussions with service providers; and project review and reporting.


Notes that the innovation related programmes have achieved a degree of success in helping local companies to develop. The programmes are generally well run, represent a high level of quality of service, and often provide tangible benefits to the participating companies. Finds that workshop based activities are highly rated in terms of organisation, facilitation, location and themes, and are useful for providing a grounding in a given topic and for stimulating thought. In terms of making a lasting difference to companies, particularly on a strategic level, those programmes that are based on concentrated assistance for individual companies have a more profound effect on the participating businesses.


Recommends that SE Ayrshire: undertake a fundamental re-planning and realignment exercise for the ‘innovation’ programmes; reassess the relevant needs of Ayrshire businesses; redefine the roles of existing programmes; improve programme workshops; provide advice and assistance for individual companies; increase targeting of new companies; target lower management structures; increase the role of team-based activities; improve co-ordination of programme promotion and recruitment of participants; address market failure; introduce pre- and post-programme support; and aim to secure participation in future feedback activities.

Author Systems Insight Ltd
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Innovation
    Business innovation, Innovation system