Theme 2 - Performance and Measurement
It is difficult to demonstrate the direct impact of ILGs and it is outside of the remit of the review to assess each intervention or project. The Review process found that:
- ILGs were set up (2011/12) to deliver a sector strategy - most ILGs have (or have had) strategies.
- ILGs have been instrumental in setting up numerous new interventions, whether Innovation Centres or new networks (e.g. FinTech Scotland)
- ILGs have acted in an advisory role e.g. providing advice to Government on sectoral impact of Brexit, responding to consultations, advising on government policy (such as A Trading Nation).
- ILGs work with enterprise and skills agencies on specific projects, including as owners of sectoral Skills Investment Plans and, in many cases, ILGs or sub-groups play an important role in SDS' sectoral skills work.
- There has been no guidance in recent years on the role of ILGs which has led to inconsistent performance.
- It was not clear what happened to the strategies created by ILGs with no identified sponsor from the government side.
Sectoral Performance and ILGs
There is no clear relationship between the operation of an ILG and sector performance and growth
- In terms of GVA growth over time, only half of the ten best performing sectors had ILGs, and ILGs operated in all five of the lowest performing sectors.
- Looking at sectors with ILGs compared to equivalent GB sectors, six of 13 sectors experienced a higher rate of employment growth between 2012-2018 and seven saw less growth.
For full analysis see Annex E.
- Sectoral performance is measured in terms of GVA and jobs, which was appropriate to the context when ILGs were established. There is now a greater emphasis on a wider view of economic growth in terms of inclusion and wellbeing. From Government's perspective there would be merit in proportionate measures of ILG success and performance which are aligned to the National Performance Framework and Inclusive Growth Diagnostic indicators. Government and ILGs should work together to agree measurement framework with achievements going 'beyond figures'.
- The role and responsibilities of an ILG should be clearly defined, taking into consideration the size and specific needs of the sector they represent.
- There should be a clear process developed where recommendations are developed, debated, approved and implemented or rejected as being inconsistent with policy or cost-prohibitive.