Levelling-up through economic growth (a business strategy for the regions)
A review of the social and economic case for the election pledge made by the UK Government to level-up the regions and a proposal for reforms necessary to achieve this commitment
He presents the view that the UK economy must be rebalanced through a programme of regional development centred on economic growth offering a range of good employment opportunities to meet the skills and aspirations of local people. This should lead to the creation of more vibrant, self-sustaining communities in all areas of the country.
He suggests that modern growth and innovation theory should guide Government policy, leading to improved business productivity and economic growth in the regions arising from local business expansion, internal relocation and some reshoring for production to assist national resilience.
His contention is that Government has considerable ability to achieve its commitment by making regional development a key objective of the way the UK state's domestic assets and influence are deployed.
He considers that the main driver of reform is improved collaboration between institutions and that this is more effective than deploying additional resources. Where additional investment is required then it must be carefully targeted to achieve maximum effect and avoid incurring unsustainable expenditure at a time when the fiscal cost of Covid-19 has significantly depleted national resources.
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About the Author: David Fellows is an accountant and early innovator in digital public service delivery. He has worked extensively in UK local government, as an advisor on local government reform in the UK Cabinet Office, and as an international advisor to the South African National Treasury. He has written extensively on public financial management and digital communication for the IMF and the Australian National University amongst others. He is a director of PFMConnect.
About PFMConnect: PFMConnect is a consultancy operating in the fields of public financial management and digital communication.