Economic Development Policy in Wales since Devolution: From Despair to Where?

David Pickernell

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    Wales was one of the first areas to utilise the resources made available after theUK was amongst the first European countries to adopt an official regional policy as a means of reducing disparities in unemployment rates, with the 1934 Special Areas Act. Whilst at that time Waleswas faced with declines in its major industries of coal and steel, 80 years on regional economic development policy is still in place in Wales to address issues of uneven employment, but also increasing incomes and growth disparities with the rest of the UK and the EU. This paper examines the changes that have taken place, and the actors that determine both the policy itself and the implementation of it. This is of particular importance currently as economic conditions continue to impact unevenly across nations and regions globally. In addition, however, the resources available to tackle such regional inequalities are becoming increasingly squeezed by the current squeeze on government fiscal policy, a situation unlikely to ease in the medium term. This means that the foci of those economic development policy resources that are available are being altered to reflect both new economic but also political realities. It is important to ask, therefore, where these processes may lead to, and how this might affect the way in which economic development policy inWalesis viewed in the future.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationN/A
    Number of pages35
    Publication statusPublished - 6 Sept 2011
    Event Regional Science Association International: 40th Annual Conference - Cardiff
    Duration: 6 Sept 20118 Sept 2011


    Conference Regional Science Association International: 40th Annual Conference


    • wales
    • regional policy
    • economic development


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