UK skills policy has, for decades, been focused primarily on increasing the supply of skills. The assumption being that a greater supply of higher level skills would in turn drive improvements in productivity. Yet, the UK now boasts one of the world’s most qualified workforces, but productivity remains low and stagnating. There is a growing consensus that enhanced leadership and people management skills, alongside better use of existing workforce capabilities, are urgently needed if we are to tackle this challenge, and that it is often at the local level where these challenges can be best addressed. 

The research, supported by the JPM Chase Foundation, investigates the extent to which Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEP) – England’s local sub-regional growth partnerships – understand and are putting in place policies and programmes to address skills demand, and skills use, issues locally. The research is based on analysis of all 38 LEP key strategic documents as well as interviews with senior skills leads in 15 LEP areas, and represents the first comprehensive attempt to map LEP activity in this area.

The research is accompanied by a summary report and recommendations for local and national stakeholders. 

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