A network of experts sharing resources and working towards a common vision that all policy and decision making in and about the region is based on sound evidence.
To be the first stop shop for intelligence in, and about, the region
Promoting the best use of good evidence in policy and decision making in and about the region.
Enabling a shared understanding of the region and its parts
Maintaining and developing a well-functioning intelligence network within the region that enhances the work of all its members.
In 2008, ahead of the then proposed duty for upper-tier authorities to conduct LEAs, SWO chaired an event and asked Local Authorities how the Observatory and RIEP could help
The answer was co-ordination and doing things to assist the LEA process that could be done once for everyone
The wide buy-in informed an action plan which led to RIEP funding for a new Local Economic Assessment Evidence Coordinator, employed by the Core Unit
The LEA Evidence Coordinator post has aimed to encourage consistent and comparable economic assessment data and method across the region, to encourage more collaborative working to save costs, to help address local authority capacity and skills constraints in economic assessment, to share best practice and to enable joint commissioning.
Specifically in the South West:
We have achieved consensus around a set of common Core Indicators for LEAs, SWO has provided this data to Local Authorities.
SWO has led a joint commission on behalf of 15 Local Authorities, the South West RDA and South West Councils for work to map Functional Economic Market Areas .
The co-ordinator regularly updates LEA leads with relevant information from local, regional and national sources, through emails, dedicated web pages on the SWO website and in person through meetings with Local Authorities.
Steering group meetings
Suggested data sources for answering key questions