UK Wide

How do we build capacity of place partnerships working on policy for local economic growth?

Local Policy Innovation Partnerships

We want communities to be at the heart of the levelling up agenda and for communities to be involved in solving issues that will move the UK towards sustainable economic growth and equitable cultural recovery. This new research hub will explore ways in which local places can be empowered to meet the needs of their communities.

Our programme will bring together place partnerships, engagement, impact, and translational research with the aim of generating policy innovation for local growth.

Led by universities across the UK, Local Policy Innovation Partnership (LPIP) areas will bring together academic and non-academic partners into place partnerships. These place partnerships will develop place-based solutions to some of the UK’s most pressing local and regional challenges through community engagement and translational research. Our role is to support the LPIPs to integrate meaningful community and public engagement into their projects. We also want to share good practice and learnings within the Strategic Coordination Hub for the programme.

How will it work?

The programme will maximise the impact from research and innovation into positive and equitable outcomes for communities. A key aim for the programme is to tap into local challenges and formulate solutions through community-based research and that results in place-based policy-making. The programme is designed to lead to a change in the quality and impact of the evidence created by universities and their local place partners. This represents a new wave of place-based evidence and research, which can be scaled up across the UK. .

Phase 1

10 place partnerships were selected for the exploratory phase 1 of the programme, which gave them funds to explore local issues and develop their phase 2 proposals. Some examples of the local challenges the place partnerships will explore during phase 1 include addressing skills gaps in Northern Ireland and the West Midlands, and boosting innovation in new green technologies in South Yorkshire’s supply chains.

Phase 2

Four of these 10 place partnerships were selected for phase 2, which gives each local area up to £4.8 million to implement projects over the following three years. Phase 2 will identify practical policy solutions to issues of pressing national and local importance, such as regional disparities, cultural recovery, and local innovation and growth.

The partnerships are:

  • Rural Wales LPIP, which will develop an inclusive, sustainable rural economy by giving local government, business and communities the evidence they need to make decisions that build prosperity and reduce inequality
  • Sterling LPIP, which will focus on building inclusive economic opportunities, including jobs, around an abundant natural resource, water
  • EPIC Futures NI, a Northern Irish project that will focus primarily on boosting skills to tackle unemployment and improve economic growth
  • Yorkshire and Humber Policy Innovation Partnership (YPIP), a project in Yorkshire that will support inclusive and sustainable growth of jobs, businesses, culture and inclusive entrepreneurship with a focus on low-income, marginalised and isolated communities

What is Involve’s role?

Involve is one of the members of the Strategic Coordination Hub for the programme. We will work directly with the place partnerships to support them to embed meaningful public engagement in decision-making within their projects. This will include offering training and mentoring to the place partnerships, providing strategic guidance, helping them to create action plans, and hands-on design and delivery of engagement processes. We will also work closely with our Hub partners to share our knowledge and skills in public engagement and participation.

Who else is involved

The programme is funded by UK Research and Innovation (UK Government), specifically the Economic and Social Research Council, Innovate UK, and the Art and Humanities Research Council.

The programme is led by the University of Birmingham’s City Region Economic and Development Institute (City-REDI). The academic partners are St Andrews University, University of Glasgow, London School of Tropical Medicine, University of Exeter, University of York, Manchester University, University of South Wales and Queens University Belfast.

The non-academic delivery partners joining Involve are the National Coordinating Centre for Public Participation (NCCPE), Inner Circle Consulting (ICC), the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) and the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES).

Find out more

You can find out more about the programme and the ten place partnerships on the UKRI website: UKRI invests in policy innovation partnerships for local growth.

You can check out the programme’s website. And you can follow the LPIP Hub on Twitter (@LPIPHUB) and LinkedIn.