Mapping Innovation in LEPs


To develop a framework for mapping the difference in innovation across the 39 LEPs of England for the UK Government’s Department of Business, Industry and Science (BIS). The aim of the project was to provide each LEP with a baseline position on which to base their future industrial strategies. The work was commissioned by BIS under the Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP.


To develop a framework to describe the innovation landscape of all 39 English LEPs to provide them with a view as to their relative strengths and uniqueness. A critical part of this project was to ensure that the comparative analysis did not unfairly highlight weaknesses of some LEPs by focussing on the strengths of others. We worked with the team from the European Institute for Urban Affairs, an economics think tank, to construct a framework that drew datasets together to describe investment, education, skills, the knowledge economy, local environment and transport. Building the framework highlighted why IDM is so rigorous in our approach as, given the nature of the task, it was critical that the datasets used for analysis had defined collection methods and sources and that they were independently verified for accuracy.


We compiled over 70 different datasets into a framework that supported the analysis and description of innovation and the local environment across all 39 English LEPs. The resultant report provided a data-driven view of each LEP and aided in identifying core strengths in science, skills and industry. The datasets used had hitherto not been used by the more traditional economic analysis consultancies and were well-received by the client, and ultimately approved for release by the Minister.

Impact: All LEPs received the report to ensure development of a uniform framework for their industrial strategy growth plans.