Modules 1 and 2

Book and Laptop

For further information on the topics covered in modules 1 and 2 of the Local Growth Academy, please view the session descriptors below. To view the presentations please join the Local Growth Academy LinkedIn Group or contact

Module 1

Understanding Place - delivered by KPMG

This session will the dialogue and thinking around the issue of place. Do we understand place? Do we know what our role is in a place? Delegates will explore how place has become core to discussions around growth, starting with policy and were asked to consider place as a business, understanding the economic growth and what drives it on one side and how the landscape of public services is reforming and reducing on the other. They will be asked to challenge the artificial boundaries that surround organisations and how their roles require them to become system leaders working collaboratively within a place.

Understanding Devolution - delivered by EY

This session will build delegates’ understanding of devolution and how to develop an effective ‘devolution deal’. The UK has lagged behind other countries in decentralising its governance, whilst ‘localism’ has gained momentum. The prize for devolution can be considerable, for example in the Midlands there is the potential to grow the economy by £34 billion by 2030. Yet there are many challenges. It requires strong local leadership, the willingness to cooperate across multiple sectors including central government, local authorities, LEPs, HEIs, the third sector and the private sector. Delegates will discuss how current devolution deals will be delivered, and produce proposed outcomes where future deals might be undertaken.

Major Project Development - delivered by Regeneris Consulting and Chris Gill, Consultant

This session will focus on developing good practice in major local growth projects. Drawing on practitioner experience and case studies, delegates will gain a solid and practical understanding of what makes a successful local growth project that attracts external support and finance. This interactive session will include:
  • Discussion of HM Treasury Green Book principles, and what they mean in practical terms for project development and appraisal 
  • Case studies of example major projects, to illustrate good practice and highlight typical pitfalls to avoid
  • Practical insights and reflections from a practitioner and programme director perspective of selecting and appraising projects in complex, cross-sector multi-partnership settings.

Growth of Risk Based Finance - delivered by HSBC

In this session, delegates will explore the various financing mechanisms available to support regional and local development schemes. There will be relevant case study presentations and interactive group discussions to examine the opportunities and challenges related to the development of finance projects. This includes collaboration between stakeholders and access to finance for different bodies (including grants, loans, private placements and public bonds).

Localisation of Fiscal Policy - delivered by HEFCE

This session will identify the important characteristics, financial structures and longer term strategic impacts of a number of risk based investment programmes that are targeting specific local areas. The session will seek to identify trends in their evolution and their implementation risks. It will focus on how these instruments are designed to influence what gets done, where and when.

Module 2

Monitoring and Evaluation - presented by Regeneris Consulting

In Module 1 we explored how to develop a successful business case for your major projects. This session will look at how to monitor and evaluate your project or programme going forward. Drawing on decades of experience in evaluating projects, programmes and policies, we will use case studies to bring this to life. Evaluation is often a mandatory requirement attached to public funding. We hope that as well as illuminating the practical issues it raises, delegates will leave with an appreciation of the inherent value of robust evaluation to successful project management and to their organisation more generally.

Working with Private Partners - presented by Blake Morgan

The focus on driving local growth and public service reform is pushing leaders to look at new collaborations across industry, business and other local anchor institutions. With various options available, how do you decide which form of collaboration to choose and how can you ensure it'll deliver its desired outcomes? This session will explore in detail some of the most common models of collaboration emerging, including Joint Ventures and Local Asset Backed Vehicles, and the outcomes they seek to achieve for all parties. Delegates will look at the necessary legal requirements underpinning these partnerships with the private sector, including issues of state aid and procurement, as well as some of the cultural challenges universities, local government and the NHS routinely face in embarking on these collaborations. Real case studies will guide the session and help colleagues considering working with private partners identify the possible solutions for their local context.

Policy Update: Growth in all Places?

Faced with persistent and widening gaps of productivity and prosperity across England, the emerging Industrial Strategy faces hugely difficult challenges in designing new policies that focus more effectively on place. Latest evidence is used to highlight the underlying causes and the sheer scale of these challenges. The expected White Paper and its proposals for new forms of regional policy are examined in detail. The emerging Shared Prosperity Fund is analysed critically for both opportunities and risks.

Inclusive Growth - presented by Joseph Rowntree Foundation

As places across the UK grapple with how to deal with a sustained period of low growth and high inequality, local leaders are increasingly looking to the inclusive growth agenda to supply the new thinking needed on the ground. But what is inclusive growth and why is it important? This session will develop an understanding of the inclusive growth agenda and how this differs from conventional local growth strategies. Delegates will explore the role of place, and particularly their own institution, in delivering inclusive growth through acting as local anchor institutions, including a return to Northaven for a group-based scenario. The interactive session will draw on research evidence and practical examples, along with both UK and international case studies, which will help leaders understand the practical steps they can take in their locality within and across local government, the NHS and the university sectors.

Strategic Organisational Choices - presented by KPMG

The session will start with delegates being asked to reflect on their roles as ‘systems leaders’ outside of organisational boundaries, linking back to the challenge set at the end of Module 1: ‘Understanding Place’. This will lead into a whole group discussion on the strategic organisational choices delegates are facing in their place around collectively delivering growth. An external speaker, who has helped to deliver strategic organisational change, will then speak about their experiences, the challenges they faced and how they were able to overcome these. The final part of the session will cover partnership and collaboration in a place, including what works and why. We will consider various examples and lessons learned from different places, and how these can be applied to successful system leadership. The session will end with delegates drawing up a personal action plan on how they can apply their learning on strategic organisational choices.

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