Enterprise policy and regional development in the North West
This area of the Institute's research is concerned with examining the discourses of government policy-making in enterprise and regional development with a specific interest in the North West, its sub-regions and communities. Within this group there is a focus on policy directed at regional development and enterprise education, including study on Higher and Further Education. For example, decisions to invest in education and training are the outcome of social relations and structures, which are influenced by regional identity.
Work is beginning to explore some of the issues surrounding this, most notably how individual employability is constructed and ultimately consumed in the knowledge-worker labour markets of the twenty-first century. Other recent work focuses on how policy makers attempt to reduce socio-spatial and socio-economic entities to programmes of regional economic development as outlined by the development of the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) and Learning Skills Councils (LSCs). Other studies in the group explore the role of Personal Business Advisors in regional business support, the concept of regionalism and leadership development in the public sector. The group link into work conducted in Lancaster's Sociology Department.