Developing local economic resilience: The role of LEPs

11th April 2014.

This CLES think-piece looks at Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and the extent to which they are developing local economic resilience.  Resilience is about the extent to which an area can both bounce back from adversity and respond to opportunity. In this, we introduce an approach which investigates how the LEPs through their composition and social strategy are triggering wider economic and place resilience.

For LEP areas to be resilient, their economic performance needs to predicated upon an approach to composition and social strategy, which considers both economic and social growth.  By social growth, we are talking about social inclusion, improvement in health outcomes, and reduction in poverty and general development of social capital. Without this social dimension, matched with a focus on economic success, LEP areas will lack resilience. Social growth and anti-poverty has not been a significant consideration of LEP activity, to date; and for resilience, we believe they must  be.