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We provide free support to local government.

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We help to make local growth policy more cost-effective, through better use of evidence and evaluation.

To achieve this, we support local government officers working on local growth to use evidence effectively when developing projects and policy.

Our offer includes events, training, tools, and a library of evidence summaries and evaluation materials. All our support is free.

Understanding the local economy

Our blog series Understanding local economic growth overviews key economic concepts including tradable vs non-tradable sectors, additionality, displacement, and more.

Following on from our blog series, our training course Understanding how local economies work introduces the key concepts of GVA, productivity, and supply and demand. 

Our new course Understanding data on local economic growth on pulling insights from available data to identify strengths and weaknesses in your local economy.

A brand new resource Diagnosing with data will be available in the next few months to complement our Understanding data on local economic growth training. Sign up to our newsletter to be the first hear about it.

Assessing your organisation’s use of evidence

Our Maturity Matrix is a new tool for economic development teams to assess how well your organisation uses evidence around economic development.

Accessing evidence of ‘what works’ to inform policymaking

Our evidence briefings help policymakers think through policies – reflecting the evidence and economic thinking. Topics include public procurement, community finance, fair employment policies, and public space improvements.

All our evidence reviews and toolkits on “what works” are pulled together on a single page for each topic, including business support, estate renewal and transport.

In the autumn and spring we run short lunch and learn webinars giving overviews on a policy topic. You’ll find some of our previous ones on YouTube.

Our workshop Making use of evidence can help people think about, assess, and select evidence more effectively. There is an ever-growing amount of evidence at people’s fingertips, but that doesn’t mean it’s all useful.

Developing projects and strategy

Our Logic model guide and training provides step-by-step advice, tips and questions to support developing a logic model for policymaking, project design, and bid writing. 


Our workshop Making use of logic models can help people use logic models more effectively.


We provide the key steps to Develop effective local industrial strategies – or any local economic strategy.

Get in touch 

We provide expert help and advice to local government considering a robust impact evaluation with a comparison group. This can include early conversations on feasibility and evaluation design, discussing available datasets, reviewing of evaluation specifications, and sitting on advisory groups. Get in touch

Join the online forum ‘Local Economic Growth in the UK – coordinated by What Works Growth’ on Knowledge Hub. The forum is for those working in local government where people can pose questions to us and economic development colleagues in councils across the country.