Somerset Economic Assessment 2012
The Somerset Economic Assessment provides a profile of the Somerset economy, developing our understanding of the distinctive nature of Somerset’s economy and the challenges and opportunities for the county. It acts as a common evidence base for policy and strategy, providing a foundation for partnership working and helping us to achieve our economic aspirations. It contains analysis of:-
The functional areas across which Somerset’s economy operates, e.g. travel to work areas, retail catchment areas and patterns of employment;
The productivity and structure of Somerset’s economy;
Skills levels, worklessness and average earnings;
Transport, ICT and housing infrastructure;
Projected future trends in employment and productivity.
Economic development is a key priority for both local and national government. The Coalition Government aims to build a new economy by supporting sustainable growth and enterprise, and promoting green industries.
The Somerset County Plan has a number of economic strands running through it including:
increasing access to employment and skills;
improving broadband connectivity;
attracting inward investment;
improving infrastructure to support economic growth;
expanding energy sources;
attracting tourists and ensuring people have the right skills and qualifications for work.
In order to put in place an appropriate plan of action we first need to understand our starting point, discover where the ‘hot spots’ are and assess where the greatest need is whilst balancing this with an understanding of where we can make the biggest difference. An assessment of the economy provides us with an understanding of how our economy “works” and where where we think we are
Somerset’s JSNA 2011 contains updated information on our health, social and environmental influences, how current need is being met, existing health inequalities, and the experiences and views of local people. It also examines two key themes which are housing, and health and wellbeing in the older population (including a focus on older carers and the over 85 age group).
The new county-wide JSNA is now available as an e-tool (not requiring log-in), with commentary on the SINe website www.sine.org.uk and data accessible via the INFORM website www.sine.org.uk/inform. Key information will be available in the form of a paper summary and will be distributed widely across Somerset.