Published: 11th Apr 2012

While many have articulated the problems, finding solutions to sluggish local economies is more elusive. At today’s Work Foundation/CLES event, ‘Economic Development: Innovating for Local Growth?, Professor Henry Overman, director of the Spatial Economics Research Centre at the LSE, made a plea for greater acknowledgement that, really, we don’t have a clue what economic development should do now. ‘Places face different challenges so appropriate responses will differ,’ he said. ‘Acknowledging that is key to understanding the changes.’ So while those areas poised for growth have a whole new tool-kit to choose from – Tax Increment Financing, New Homes Bonus etc – these aren’t much help to those places whose economies have no chance of growth in the near future. All areas need greater control over how they respond to change, as well as recognition from central government of the progress already made in local governance. The ambiguities of current policy … (To read the full article, subscribe below)