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Decision details

Local Economic Assessment and development of the City Strategy’s Inclusive Economic Framework

Decision Maker: Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee

Decision status: Recommendations Approved



The report sets out the proposal to develop the City Strategy by way of: evidence gathering and engagement (including the production of the Local Economic Assessment and the delivery of the Community Voice and Insight Commission); strategic development; and consultation and testing.


The report proposes the alignment of the City Strategy with Sheffield’s Levelling Up regeneration pilot and the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority’s Strategic Economic Plan.


The report also sets out the proposal for governance arrangements for the City Strategy.




RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That the Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee Policy Committee:-



1. endorses the proposed process to develop the City Strategy as set out in the report;


2.  endorses the approach to align economic strategic and policy announcements with the City Strategy, as set out in this report; and


3. notes the governance arrangements of the City Strategy, as set out in the





Reasons for Decision




It is crucial that we understand the economic challenges that the city faces, including inequalities across our communities. As our Local Economic Assessment, the Economic Evidence Base creates a new source of evidence upon which the Council can make informed policy decisions.




The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and new collaborations across the city mean there is a fresh impetus behind having a coherent joined up vision for the city that sets out the city’s ambitions and how they will be achieved. The economy and people’s health, wellbeing, the environment and social inequalities are inextricably linked. Integrating a strategy for an inclusive economy into a wider partner-led City Strategy helps to address cross -cutting issues and creates a focus for the city for the medium to long-term.




Alternatives Considered and Rejected




Do nothing: Whilst undertaking the Local Economic Assessment is a duty of the Council, there is no requirement to produce a strategy. Instead, policies could be developed and agreed on an ad hoc basis. However, this approach has a number of drawbacks:



1. An agreed strategy between city partners facilitates better joint working which is particularly important on issues that cut across different organisations, for example health and skills.

2. A strategy provides a framework for activity over the longer- term, which allows services to plan more effectively.

3. A strategy provides an opportunity to communicate the city’s priorities which can support discussions with central government, funding bodies and investors.




Produce a separate City Strategy and Inclusive Economic Strategy: Another option is to produce two separate strategies. One would cover broad policy areas whilst another would focus on the economy. However, this option had the following drawbacks:

1. Links between the economy and wider policy issues may be missed

2. There would be significant duplication of effort, particularly in regard to partner and community engagement, potentially resulting in ‘engagement fatigue’.

3. The coherency of having one single document that sets out the city’s priorities would be diluted.




Report author: Diana Buckley

Publication date: 11/07/2022

Date of decision: 20/06/2022

Decided at meeting: 20/06/2022 - Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee

Accompanying Documents: