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SEEDA Strategy 2002 2012

SEEDA Strategy 2002 2012

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Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

2002 - 2012

Cover Photograph Chatham Maritime, SEEDA’s flagship physical development project covering 140 hectares in the heart of the Medway Towns. It is one of the largest Government supported projects outside of London and has 1.5 kilometres of riverside walks, five restored historic buildings, many now ready for re-occupation and 80,000 square metres of first class new office accommodation providing workspace for 2,500 people.

CONTENTS

1

Page Chairman’s Introduction 2

Part One The Context for the Regional Economic Strategy A Sustainable Future for the South East Economy 7 8

Part Two The Five Objectives of the Regional Economic Strategy Competitive Businesses Priority 1: Priority 2: Priority 3: Enterprise Growth and Innovation International Relationships 15 17 20 22 25 29 32 36 38 40 41 46 50 53 54 57 59 61 64 66 69 72 74 75

Successful People Priority 4: Priority 5: Priority 6: Priority 7: Skills for Prosperity Participation in Prosperity Learning for All Social Dialogue

Vibrant Communities Priority 8: Priority 9: Community Participation and Local Leadership Urban Renaissance

Priority 10: Connecting Diversity with Prosperity Priority 11: Community Infrastructures and Services Effective Infrastructure Priority 12: Housing Priority 13: Transport Priority 14: Broadband Priority 15: Brownfield Land Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Priority 16: Environmental Capital Priority 17: Sustainable Land Management Priority 18: Water, Waste and Energy

Part Three Measuring Progress Introduction Framework of Indicators 77 78 80

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CHAIRMAN’S INTRODUCTION

2

Vision
It is three years since we prepared, on behalf of the South East of England, the first Regional Economic Strategy (RES). I believe that as a region we have made substantial progress since then both in identifying common goals and in working together to achieve them1. This revised Strategy reflects that progress but also highlights the challenges and new opportunities that lie ahead of us. Following the publication of the first RES, SEEDA was very pleased to work with the Regional Assembly, the Government Office and other regional partners to prepare ‘The Regional Sustainable Development Framework’, published in June 2001. This sets the vision of ‘a prosperous region delivering a high quality of life and environment for everyone, now and in the future’. As the 2002 Johannesburg Summit demonstrated, Sustainable Development is the greatest challenge of our times. This principle of Sustainable Development – not ‘growth at all costs’ – is at the heart of this strategy. We need smart growth that maximises the benefit gained from scarce resources - growth driven by productivity gains, not by resource intensive and low value added activity. More traditional forms of growth characterised by physical expansion and higher employment levels still have an important role in parts of the region. However no area or sector of the South East is exempt from the absolute need to move up the value added chain. In the longer term, none of us will be able to compete with developing economies abroad on the basis of cost alone - we will all stand or fall by the value we add through exploiting our knowledge base. This applies as much to manufacturing and the rural economy as it is does to ICT and financial services. We are thought of as a service economy, yet we have a higher gross manufacturing turnover than any other UK region. The cities, towns and urban areas of our region play a central role in the success of our economy, yet nearly a quarter of all businesses in the South East are based in rural areas. Indeed, the importance of our rural economy is reflected throughout this Strategy, recognising that rural and urban issues should not be put in separate silos. We are a leading region in Europe for knowledge-based business, yet we are also a leading centre of culture and one of our main assets is the quality of our natural, historic and built environment. All this calls for a sophisticated approach that recognises the differing needs and opportunities of different parts of the region and sectors of the economy. That is why in preparing this Strategy we have placed considerable importance on working with the region’s Economic Partnerships and other partners to identify the needs and opportunities of their areas. In the spring and summer of 2002 we hosted 17 consultation events to inform this review. Over 3,000 people were actively engaged in the review process, which also included two major consultation days with the full Regional Assembly. We issued a consultation document to inform the review in April 2002. The relevant SEEDA website page was accessed over 5,000 times and we received some 300 written responses. A full report on the outcome of the consultation process is available on our website (www.seeda.co.uk).

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See Regional Economic Strategy 1999: Progress Assessment by SQW Limited, April 2002

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CHAIRMAN’S INTRODUCTION

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Dealing with the Problems of Success
In the first RES we said that the South East had a £108 billion economy. In 2002, that figure is closer to £140 billion. We are the most successful regional economy of the fourth largest national economy in the world, on the doorstep of one of the world’s three great global cities. We are undoubtedly the locomotive of the UK economy. In 1999-2000 this region made a net contribution of £17 billion to the Exchequer – far more than any other UK region including London. We must not talk this region down. Yes, we do have problems but they are largely problems of success. The review process has demonstrated that the three main problems of success that we currently face are transport congestion, skills shortage and lack of affordable housing.

Transport Congestion
In my introduction to the first RES, I said that as a country we had failed to invest in an adequate transport infrastructure. Chronic congestion at peak times on both road and rail restricts the sustainable growth potential of our businesses, damages our environment, and adds to the problems of our already disadvantaged communities. We identified the key investments needed and there has been some progress. The Government’s 10 Year Transport Plan reflects a substantial planned increase in transport investment in the region with many of the priorities the RES identified included. The overwhelming need is now to concentrate on implementation and not more studies. This is the message that has come to us strongly as we have consulted on this Strategy – not least from the many business leaders with whom I personally discussed this and other issues in depth. Through the RES and the Regional Transport Strategy (RTS), prepared by the Regional Assembly as part of Regional Planning Guidance, we must press for a real commitment to delivery to a time-scale that matches the urgency of the problem We cannot build our way out of the congestion problem. We do need urgent investment to provide new transport infrastructure for the region. However, we must also be prepared to tackle the seemingly insatiable demand for road transport. As employers and individuals we must be prepared to change our travel behaviour, to embrace new communications technology and flexible working. We must face up to the necessary sticks in the form of pricing and regulation but we must also press for the carrots of improvement in public transport, recognising that revenue investment is key to unlocking the potential capacity of what we already have.

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CHAIRMAN’S INTRODUCTION

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The figures speak for themselves:
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People in the South East travel further than those in any other region (8,000 miles per year, against an England average of 6,800 miles per year); The South East has the most heavily used roads outside London (4,800 vehicles per day/km compared with the England average of 3,700 vehicles); Average vehicle speeds on trunk roads in the South East during the morning peak dropped by 11.4 mph between 1995 and 1998 (the latest figure available) compared with 5.9 mph for England as a whole; Vehicle trips in the South East are forecast to grow by 17.5% between 2001 and 2011; In terms of peak track capacity, less than 10% of the rail network in the South East is operating at 90% of capacity or more.

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There is no panacea. Building on the consensus that the Regional Transport Strategy and this RES should provide, we need a compact between all business, public and voluntary interests that recognises that the goal of a sustainable transport system demands a contribution from all of us. Such a compact - with specific commitments from all to address demand as well as supply issues - will give us a strong base for going to Government to press for the urgent capital and revenue investment needed to invest in the region’s transport infrastructure.

Learning and Skills
One of the main reasons why businesses invest in the South East is the quality of our workforce. We must celebrate this fact. At the same time we must recognise that we are not making the most of this valuable asset. First, the generally high employment rate of the region masks pockets of exclusion, low pay and under utilisation of the workforce. Parts of the population are effectively excluded from work. It is not acceptable that in a generally well-educated region we have some one million people unable to achieve basic skills in reading, writing and numeracy. We must match investment in technology with investment in our own people, otherwise we will not fully exploit our technology capability. An economy that is overly dependent on imported labour is not sustainable in itself and is a drain on other regions. Learning providers must supply high quality resources in rapid response to employer needs. Young people must be familiar with the world of work and industry before they leave formal education. All this will only be achieved if there are stronger links between education and business. This Strategy therefore proposes actions to improve labour productivity across the region. It also emphasises the need to maximise the employability of our current and potential workforce, and stresses that our biggest challenge is to stimulate a commitment to lifelong learning amongst individuals and employers. We must persuade both employers and individuals that learning pays. Training and development is not only vital for competitive success but also key to individuals wanting to achieve their full potential and advance in life. SEEDA will continue to work closely with the region’s Local Learning and Skills Councils, the Business Links and other key partners to deliver these objectives.

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CHAIRMAN’S INTRODUCTION

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Affordable Housing
We identified affordable housing as an important issue in the first RES. However, our consultations to inform the review show that affordable housing has now clearly become one of the top three critical issues that the region must address. SEEDA’s particular concern is that the lack of affordable housing is a threat to the sustainable growth of the region. It affects the ability of business to attract and retain workers and therefore their efficiency and competitiveness. It also squeezes out the key public sector workers that are an essential underpinning to any successful economy. Lack of affordable housing also has an unacceptable social cost - particularly for the more vulnerable groups in society. We need concerted action across all sectors. This is not an issue just for the public sector; it also demands the focussed attention of the business community with the voluntary sector also having a key contribution to make. In the consultation document, to inform the review, we issued a challenge. We said that as a region we were strong on identifying the problem but weak on action to address it. We highlighted the danger of confining the issue to the ‘too difficult’ box. The challenge was for us and our partners to come up with positive commitments to combined action. This Strategy, and particularly the Action Plans that support it, shows that we have gone some way towards meeting that challenge. We do not pretend that we have all the answers, but the actions identified reflect a real commitment to tackling this issue head on. The complete solution is not within the gift of the region alone. SEEDA stands ready to work with the Regional Assembly, the Government Office and other partners, including our colleagues in London, to lobby and work with the Government on any necessary actions that it must take. By capturing what the region will do for itself, this Strategy now provides a firm basis for taking this forward.

Setting our Sights High
The South East of England must punch its weight internationally. We must do this if our people are to have the quality of life they rightly expect. And we must also do this if the South East is going to continue to drive the UK economy. It is a paradox that within one of the world’s top performing regions, the performance gap between leading and lagging areas is widening. This is true of our coastal fringe, and of parts of our large towns and cities. But deprivation also exists alongside prosperity in some of our most successful areas. We have severely deprived communities with individuals that suffer particularly badly as a consequence of being poor within a generally wealthy region. But the scale of deprivation need not daunt us – through concerted action we can tackle it. Looked at another way, our deprived communities are an under-utilised economic resource as well as an unacceptable social ill. Three years ago, I pointed out that a key challenge for the South East was the need to link the dynamism of our most successful areas and the untapped opportunity presented by our less successful areas for their mutual benefit. That remains an urgent issue for all of us.

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CHAIRMAN’S INTRODUCTION

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We must set our sights high. It is no good comparing the performance of the South East economy with those of other UK or even just European regions. Our real competitors – and the regions against which we must judge our performance – are the top regions worldwide. That is why to underpin the delivery of this Strategy we are mounting a major new initiative to benchmark the performance of this region against fourteen other top global economies in North America and Asia as well as in Europe. We are not however interested in statistical comparison as an end in itself. Where aspects of these economies are stronger than ours, we want to find out why and identify any lessons that we can apply sustainably in the particular circumstances for this region. We do not see this as a one way process. As a region we have many strengths to which others aspire, for example, our research base and the creativity of our people. Despite the pressures, we have also managed to balance economic success with a level of social cohesion and environmental and cultural quality in a way that sets benchmarks for other successful economies. However we cannot afford to be complacent and we will only move forward if we learn from the best and then better it.

What next?
What matters now is delivery. That is why we are publishing with this core Strategy an actions document which identifies high level actions not just for SEEDA but also for our partners, drawing from their constructive responses to the consultation exercise. The document needs further development and the high level actions will need to be accompanied by clear, prioritised, timed and funded delivery plans with measurable targets. Essential to the delivery of this Strategy will be the Government’s investment in and support for the region’s local authorities and public services, taking into account inter-regional differences in the costs of provision. This must be sufficient to deliver a quality of service that at least matches that of other parts of the country. For our part, SEEDA will consult further on how we will deliver the actions that fall to us in preparing our Corporate Plan for the next three years. I must emphasise however that this is a Strategy for the region, not just SEEDA. Our role is often as a catalyst to promote and support the actions of others. We will therefore work with our partners across all sectors, at the regional and more local levels, to ensure that together we take forward a complementary programme of action to help deliver the vision of a prosperous region with an environment and quality of life for all that we can be proud of now and pass on to future generations. On behalf of the SEEDA Board and executives, may I thank all of you who have contributed your time, energy and expertise to the preparation of this Strategy.

Allan Willett CMG Chairman

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

PART ONE

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The Context for the Regional Economic Strategy

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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1. 1.1

A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE FOR THE SOUTH EAST ECONOMY Smart Growth: the Vision for South East England
The Regional Sustainable Development Framework2 sets a vision of: ‘A prosperous region delivering high quality of life and environment for everyone, now and in the future’. This Regional Economic Strategy (RES) sets a 10-year framework for delivering the economic aspirations of that vision, set within the broader context of Sustainable Development. Our aim is that by 2012 the South East will be recognised by all as one of the world’s 15 top performing regional economies, as measured against a broad range of economic, social and environmental indicators. The principles of Sustainable Development require that economic growth must be of a particular type, pattern and spread. It must be growth of a form that assists the region to achieve the objectives of sustainable development. This ‘smart growth’, reflecting to the particular opportunities and challenges of the South East, is the cornerstone of our Regional Economic Strategy. It comprises five objectives:

Competitive businesses:
a dynamic, diverse and knowledge-based economy that excels in innovation and turning ideas into wealth creating enterprise. By 2012, the South East will be one of the world’s 15 most enterpreneurial and innovative regions

Successful people:
a skilled, motivated, inclusive and highly productive workforce that anticipates and embraces change. By 2012, the South East will be one of the top 15 regions in the world in terms of labour productivity and employment rates

Vibrant communities:
an inclusive society characterised by strong, diverse and healthy communities enjoying ready access to high quality jobs, education, homes, health and other services, and free from high levels of crime and discrimination. By 2012, the gap between the most deprived parts of the region and the rest will have narrowed by at least 10%

Effective infrastructure:
transport, communications housing and health infrastructures that support and enable continued economic growth and improved quality of life for all. By 2012, the region will have made measurable progress towards infrastructure that matches the standards of the best in North West Europe

Sustainable use of natural resources:
environmentally efficient businesses and high quality development demonstrating that quality of the environment is a key asset that underpins economic success. By 2012 the South East will be one of the world’s leading environmental economies, with businesses in the region having made significant gains in safeguarding and enhancing this asset The principles of sustainable development have been embedded throughout this Strategy through undertaking a sustainability appraisal of all policies put forward for consultation. The results of that appraisal are available on our website (www.seeda.co.uk), and have been taken into consideration in preparing this Strategy.

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A Better Quality of Life in the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, 2001

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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1.2

What Smart Growth Means for the South East
In order to achieve excellence as a high performing region, South East England must do more than simply improve its aggregate economic performance. Economic success for the region can only be sustainable if growth is of a pace, type and spread that reinforces progress against the other key aspects of sustainable development. Translating this into the four themes of Sustainable Development means that the region’s economy needs to support:
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Social progress which recognises the needs of everyone, with strong communities and diverse opportunities; Effective protection of and investment in environmental assets, ensuring a distinctive, diverse and attractive landscape through high quality development; Prudent use of natural resources, with environmentally efficient households and businesses and burgeoning environmental industries; Maintenance of high and stable levels of economic growth and employment, with a strong, diverse and dynamic economy.

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Releasing Economic Potential
Ultimately, the only route to improving the long term performance of an economy lies in raising productivity. The key drivers of productivity3 are:
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Skills – of all sections of the workforce Investment – in people, research and development, land and premises, capital equipment and infrastructure Innovation – including the practical application of technology in developing new products and processes Enterprise – including the creation of new businesses and their subsequent growth Competition – ensuring that regulation encourages rather than stifles innovation and improved efficiency

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Improving the overall performance of the South East as a high performing region also relies on releasing the full potential of all parts of the region, including those that currently lag behind. For example, taking a broad composite index of ‘knowledge economy success’ the performance of East Sussex currently lags behind that of the Thames Valley by around 20%. Similar differentials can be seen in other aspects of economic performance:
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GDP growth in Kent, East and West Sussex lags significantly behind the regional average; GDP per head in the Berkshire Unitary Authorities and Surrey is around double the level in the Isle of Wight.

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Regional economic development must raise the performance of weaker sub-regions while also building on the existing success of the stronger sub-regions. A strategy that simply seeks to redistribute activity will not work.

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Derived from Productivity in the UK – the Regional Dimension, HM Treasury / Department of Trade and Industry, 2001

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Tackling Disadvantage
More broadly, economic progress alone will not be sustainable if current patterns of disadvantage and exclusion persist:
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Although the South East has a lower unemployment rate than any other UK region4, this still represents over 150,0005 people in Spring 2002, a higher number than in six other English regions; Health inequalities experienced in the South East are in many cases as pronounced as in any other region in the UK. Death rates from strokes exceed the national average in 21 local authority areas, and for coronary heart disease people living in the poorest households have mortality rates almost twice as high as those living in the most affluent households; In 2000, Windsor and Maidenhead saw 736 new business registered per 10,000 adult population, compared with only 31 in each of Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight. In the 119 most deprived wards, the number of VAT registered business per 10,000 population was 32% below the average for the South East; The proportion of 16 year olds achieving at least five GCSEs at grades A*-C in 2001 varied from 63.3% in Buckinghamshire to 34.3% in Portsmouth. However there are significant proportions of adults with low skills levels throughout the region – none of the 6 Learning and Skills Council areas has a proportion lower than 27%7; At 80.4%, the employment rate8 in the South East is higher than any other region. Employment rates in West Berkshire (86%) and Bracknell Forest (85%) are particularly high. Conversely, the employment rate in the Isle of Wight, Brighton & Hove and Southampton is 71%, significantly below the UK average of 74.1%; In 1999 there were almost 100,000 households on the housing register in the region accepted to be in housing need – a figure which has been rising steadily since 19959. Whilst the Regional Planning Guidance (RPG) indicates a need for around 12,000 new affordable home each year, in 1999 - 2000 only 6,000 were built, and current evidence suggests that this number is falling10.

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International Labour Office Definition – unemployed and wishing to work Labour Force Survey (LFS), 2002 from NOMIS Small Business Service (SBS), 2001 Annual Skills Review 2002, published by Skills Insight Defined as the proportion of the working age population in work, excluding the unemployed and economically inactive Housing Investment Programme returns, as analysed in A Better Quality of Life in the South East, South East England Regional Assembly 2001 The Housing Corporation, 2001

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The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Recognising the Contribution of Environmental Assets to Sustainable Economic Growth
Economic growth will only be sustainable if it goes hand in hand with maintaining or enhancing environmental quality. The South East has a striking concentration of key environmental assets11:
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One third of the region is designated as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) – nearly one third of the total AONBs in England. Another 15% land is designated as the Green Belt. There are 700 Sites of Special Scientific Interest There are some 93,000 designated historic buildings, sites and areas A total of 72 km of the South East’s coastline is designated as Heritage Coast

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At the same time, those same assets make a key contribution to the region’s prosperity. At one level, they form part of the region’s attractiveness to business investors. At another, at least 530 environmental technologies firms are present in the South East, and several of Europe’s leading environmental research centres and consultancies are based in the region. Increasingly, the environmental economy will be a driver of growth in sectors from organic farming to power engineering.

Ensuring Sound Stewardship of Natural Resources
Economic growth will be undermined unless it is achieved through the prudent use of natural resources:
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The issue of water supply is becoming a development constraint in some parts of the region. The production of waste has increased in recent years – partly due to increase in population and industrial activity but also because waste generation per head is on the increase, reflecting improvements in economic wealth. The region’s energy needs will largely be met by fossil fuels over the next decade but their use generates greenhouse gases and contributes to global warming.

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Analysed in detail in State of the Environment Report, Environment Agency Southern and Thames Regions, 2002

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Addressing the Needs of a Diverse Region
The South East is a large and diverse region, and it is vital that the Regional Economic Strategy recognises and works with the grain of that diversity to ensure its relevance across the region. Regional Planning Guidance12 provides the spatial framework for the Regional Economic Strategy, and identifies the following parts of the region that require particular policy approaches:
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The Thames Gateway – the largest single regeneration initiative in North West Europe and an area of acknowledged national importance, where the task is to release the area’s potential to make a vital and major contribution to the growth of the regional economy and the enhancement of its environment; Priority Areas for Economic Regeneration – where the task is to tackle deprivation in order to achieve social inclusion, raise overall economic performance and reduce disparities in prosperity across the region; The Western Policy Area – where the task is to build on existing economic strengths in order to achieve sustainable growth with minimum additional pressures on labour and land; Potential Growth Areas – where the task is to concentrate growth at Ashford and Milton Keynes in a sustainable and planned way.

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This Regional Economic Strategy endorses and adopts these spatial priorities. It also addresses the economic contours of the South East in a way that relates the Smart Growth agenda to other parts of the region, including:
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Emerging areas of economic success – releasing and sustaining economic potential while ensuring deprived communities share in success; Leading urban areas – recognising their role as major economic drivers, while also providing a focus for urban renaissance; Small rural towns – reviving their role as key service centres for surrounding rural communities; Other deprived urban areas – which share many of the attributes of Priority Areas for Economic Regeneration, although on a smaller scale; Deprived rural areas – where social and economic inclusion is a key priority.

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The map on page 14 relates these issues to the geography of the region. The wider planning and transport implications of these economic contours will need to be considered when reviewing Regional Planning Guidance, which commences in 2003.

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Regional Planning Guidance for the South East (RPG 9), Government Offices for the South East, East of England and London, 2001. A review of this Guidance will commence in 2003, with proposals submitted to Government by the end of 2004.

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Working as an Integrated Region
No region exists in a vacuum, and the fortunes of the South East’s economy are closely dependent on a series of relationships extending beyond its own formal boundaries. The Economic Profile of the South East13 demonstrates that the region is:
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A Global Gateway - the South East is the world’s principal gateway not only into the UK but also into Europe An International Region – the South East is a significant contributor to European prosperity and it is the preferred location for multinational headquarters in Europe. The South East’s share of foreign direct investment is the highest of any UK region outside of London. An Integrated Region - the economy of the South East is intertwined with that of London through commuting patterns, business and sectoral links, and the shared interest in the Thames Gateway and a number of key transport corridors. Other significant cross-boundary links for the South East include: - The Thames Gateway (with East of England and London) - The Central South Coast (with South West England) - Oxford – Cambridge Arc (with East of England) - Milton Keynes/South Midlands (with East Midlands and East of England)

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These linkages inform, and run through, the Regional Economic Strategy.

From Principles to Strategy
This section has set out the principles underpinning the Regional Economic Strategy. Part Two sets out how these principles will be translated into practice for each of the five objectives of:
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Competitive businesses Successful people Vibrant communities Effective infrastructure Sustainable use of natural resources

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An Economic Profile of the South East, published by SEEDA 2002

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE CONTEXT FOR THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Spatial Priorities

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

PART TWO

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The Five Objectives of the Regional Economic Strategy

Competitive Businesses

Successful People

Sustainable Development Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Effective Infrastructure Vibrant Communities

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The South East and Europe
The European Union is of increasing importance to the South East, offering opportunities for trade, partnership and sharing of best practice. The South East faces a number of challenges, including the revision of the Structural Funds and the Common Agricultural Policy (the principal funds from the European Union). With enlargement bringing in potentially 13 new countries, some as early as 2004, the number of EU consumers will grow from the current 320 million to 500 million. The South East is well positioned to benefit from this increased market through trade in goods and services, investment and a larger and more diverse labour market. New opportunities for technology transfer, cheaper inputs and greater economies of scale could also increase the international competitiveness of South East businesses. 85% of UK environmental legislation originates from the EU. The South East’s leading position on sustainable development (including SEEDA’s role in this agenda) has much to offer European regions. Climate change, pollution, air quality, transport, energy consumption and waste management are of global concern. The sharing of best practice on these and other pressures will be key in assuring quality of life and an efficient infrastructure. Changes in the way the Common Agricultural Policy supports farmers, encouraging rural diversification and sustainable land management, will have a profound effect on the rural economy and landscape. Competition policy and measures to complete the Single Market affect the way businesses operate in the South East; with increasing liberalisation of markets. The forthcoming review of State Aid policy could result in increasing regulation and affect global competitiveness. SEEDA and the Regional Assembly chair a Joint Europe Committee with regional partners which monitors these issues as they affect the South East and lobby European institutions on behalf of the region. The European Strategy for the South East 2001-6 (www.seeda.co.uk), commissioned by the Committee, provides a framework for the region to maximise the benefits of membership of the European Union. Regional partners are working together on the action plan to ensure that the South East’s interests are promoted at the European level. Intelligence gathering and representation of the region’s interests are supported by South East England House in Brussels14.

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launched in September 2000, South East England House comprises the sub regional partnerships of Kent, East Sussex and Surrey, Hampshire, West Sussex and the Isle of Wight, and the Thames Valley, together with SEEDA and the Regional Assembly

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

THE FIVE OBJECTIVES OF THE REGIONAL ECONOMIC STRATEGY

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Competitive Businesses

Sustainable Development

COMPETITIVE BUSINESSES

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The Issues
The success and prosperity of the South East depends on the performance of its businesses. And the starting point for the South East is a pool of assets that is the envy of most other regions. Many of the world’s most successful businesses have already chosen the South East as the European centre for their activities. The region is also the UK’s most successful in starting and sustaining new businesses. This includes businesses that exploit the rich knowledge base in the region’s universities and research institutions. Yet all these businesses, however large or small, face relentless competition within increasingly open and global markets. One of the region’s great strengths is the breadth and diversity of its business base. However, across all sectors and in all parts of the region, the performance gap between the average and the best is substantial. This demonstrates the potential to achieve greater prosperity from the region’s limited resources of people and land, provided that all can recognise and embrace the need for continuous improvement and upgrading. Success as a knowledge economy depends on far more than success within a narrow range of high technology activities. Businesses across the region, whatever their product, market or level of technical sophistication, must be equipped to innovate and to apply technological advances alongside or ahead of the world’s best. The South East continues to be rich in both commercial and Government-funded research and development. However, there is a real challenge surrounding technology transfer and the need to make links between businesses and research institutions really work. More needs to be done in building bridges between our excellent Science, Engineering and Technology base and our businesses, to translate basic research into increased operational efficiency and commercial advantage. Manufacturing in the South East retains a strategic importance both regionally and nationally. Already the leading region in terms of gross manufacturing turnover and value of manufactured exports; by 2010 manufacturing employment in the South East is projected to match that of the West Midlands and be higher than in any other UK region15. We also need to ensure strong performance across the businesses that support the supply chain and service economy. It is vital that we improve productivity and upgrade performance across all businesses and in all parts of the region. We also need to ensure that our public services support the success of the region’s traded sector. Underpinning all of this, sustained economic growth can only come from continued productivity improvements driven by innovation and creativity, allowing businesses to achieve more with less. Improving productivity therefore lies at the heart of the Strategy for the South East.

Priorities
The objective is that by 2012, the South East will be one of the world’s 15 most enterpreneurial, innovative and productive regions. There are three priorities supporting this objective:
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Enterprise – accelerating business start-ups and improving the survival rate of young companies Innovation – enabling existing businesses to adapt, prosper and grow through innovation International relationships – encouraging international business activity

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Source: Cambridge Econometrics for South East Region TUC Manufacturing Task Group, 2001

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

COMPETITIVE BUSINESSES

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Progress will also be necessary against other objectives:
Successful People developing entrepreneurial, leadership and management skills; maximising workforce skills and participation Vibrant Communities ensuring all parts of the region share in economic success Effective Infrastructure ensuring supportive housing, health services, transport and communications (especially broadband) infrastructure Sustainable Use of Natural Resources maintaining the South East’s environmental capital as a core strength, and securing sustainable land management and to support greater prosperity for land-based activities

Innovation Framework
Innovation is a vital determinant of business performance and economic success. Innovative firms are more successful than non-innovators. Innovative regions enjoy the benefits of rapid economic growth and high standards of living, on a sustainable basis. Vital sources of new technology and know-how – our universities and research centres both public and private – are major drivers for innovation in the region as their strengths are increasingly harnessed to generate wealth. However, innovation can be too narrowly seen as the successful exploitation of new ideas and technologies, important though this is. Innovation goes beyond new products and processes to include the development of new skills and entrepreneurship through education and training; new forms of management, organisation and working practices; and new markets and sources of supply. As the framework for innovation below spells out, developing a truly innovative economy requires contributions from many players, and an environment that attracts and retains innovative and creative people and businesses. Many of the strategic priorities of this Strategy are designed to improve the region’s performance on the dimensions of the innovation framework.

Research and teaching excellence

Spin out, start up and technology transfer with links to the market place Incubation, Science and Technology parks Seedcorn and venture capital Links to promote technology transfer & dissemination from HEIs, NHS Exploiting SMART, Faraday, LINK, TCS, Foresight

Growing knowledge based firms

Infrastructure and quality of life

Research excellence ratings in universities (RAE) Institutes/centres of excellence Teaching quality, graduate training and employability Teaching entrepreneurship International partnerships and links

Attract/nurture larger firms, inward investment Private R&D

Supportive planning system Broadband connectivity

Continuous improvement of the skills base

Housing and transport Education and health provision Culture, leisure and lifestyle

Networks, clusters and supply chains

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PRIORITY 1 The Task

Enterprise - accelerate business start-ups and improve the survival rate of young companies

For the South East to remain one of the world’s top performing regions for business competitiveness, it needs to encourage an increase in the business birth rate. It also needs to nurture young potential high-growth businesses, particularly in the early years of operation. The South East therefore needs to embed a process in which ambitious entrepreneurs are supported and encouraged during all the development stages of their business idea. These services need to be readily accessible in both urban and rural locations and across all types of enterprises. They also need to address the particular distinct needs of businesses including social enterprises, in both successful and less successful parts of the region.

Key Actions
1. Raise awareness and build an enterprise culture Awareness of enterprise will be raised to help build an enterprise society in which small businesses of all kinds thrive and achieve their potential. Better integration and signposting of sources of support will be supported, in order to increase the number of people considering going into business. This will include action to encourage increasing numbers of women going into business. 2. Increase start-up, survival and growth rates of a broad range of small businesses Many agencies provide elements of support for new businesses, but the South East lacks a comprehensive and coherent strategy for implementation. The Small Business Service has given Regional Development Agencies the task of ensuring this is in place, and the South East Regional Business Support Board chaired by SEEDA will address this. Within this strategy, the region’s growing network of Enterprise Hubs and Gateways will ensure the availability of world class incubation facilities for all kinds of businesses across the region. 3. Increase the capability of the region’s knowledge base to generate new businesses using new technologies and ideas A central role of the Enterprise Hub network is to act as a focus for exploiting the region’s knowledge base by encouraging new technology businesses, including university and corporate spinouts. This process will be further supported by the development of specialist hatcheries, involving universities and research establishments, to support innovators through the pre-start-up phase of converting a business idea into commercial reality. 4. Ensure the supply of suitable flexible and affordable workspace Growing businesses in both urban and rural locations require a supportive planning infrastructure and a range of appropriate workspace provision across the region. Working with private sector developers and agents, move-on (second and third phase) accommodation will be provided for successful innovative companies. The provision of ‘remote office’ facilities nearer to home will be piloted as a response to the need for more flexible working. 5. Enhance the availability of business finance An effective ‘escalator’ of funding sources will be assembled to address specific market failures in the availability of finance to young and growing businesses. This will include the development and promotion of publicly supported seedcorn and early stage finance initiatives, including the use of SMART grants, the Small Business Service’s Early Growth Funds, the Regional Venture Capital Fund and venture capital for community development. Private capital sources such as Business Angels networks will also be encouraged. Efforts will be intensified to help young businesses to present ‘investment ready’ proposals to funders and investors, to maximise their chances of success.
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Key Partners
SEEDA, South East Business Links, Regional Business Support Board16, South East England Cultural Consortium17, commercial and Government research institutes, local authorities, voluntary sector, commercial providers of business workspace.

Links to Other Objectives
Successful People Equally important is the ability to develop effective management skills throughout the firm’s development, especially in young entrepreneurs, encouraging them to harness their ability to commercialise innovative ideas Vibrant Communities Key actions on enterprise need to connect directly with the specific needs of deprived urban and rural areas, in order to release their potential to contribute to the region’s economy

Enterprise Hubs and Enterprise Gateways
Global best practice has been incorporated into SEEDA’s initiatives to increase the start-up survival and growth rate of young companies. Our expectation is to complete a network of 20 Enterprise Gateways and 20 Enterprise Hubs by 2007. Each will be a business incubation network which:
G

Enables businesses to learn from and do business with each other, collaborating on key strategic projects Identifies the right sources of finance and links these with investment ready companies Ensures young and growing companies have access to flexible premises to support successive stages of development Links these companies to the business advice, mentoring and training they need to ensure they develop the management capability to succeed

G

G

G

Enterprise Hubs are a maturing group of networks and centres, already recognised as leading Europe in business incubation good practice for fast growing technology companies. The Hubs have a particular role in facilitating the transfer of technology and know-how from the region’s universities and research institutes, with several of them based on science campuses or science parks. They are a focus for cluster development in leading edge products and technologies, and are increasingly attracting investment by high tech companies into the region. Enterprise Gateways are an exciting new initiative being developed jointly by SEEDA and the South East Business Links to provide business incubation networks nurturing entrepreneurs and young companies within the general business community right across the region. There will be a priority given to rural areas and areas of the region and groups within which entrepreneurship and business skills are low. Not for profit businesses and social enterprises will be valued participants in the Gateway networks. Other business communities are not excluded, however, and all areas that could benefit will have the opportunity to make proposals for Gateways.
16

The Regional Business Support Board comprises representatives of SEEDA, the Small Business Service, the South East Business Links, Trade Partners UK, the Government Office for the South East, the South East England Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the Federation of Small Businesses, the Learning and Skills Council, the Confederation of British Industry, the Institute of Directors, the Engineering Employers Federation (South), Enterprise Hubs, the South East Economic Partnerships, the South East Region Trades Union Congress, Enterprise Agencies and universities. The Cultural Consortium represents the full range of cultural interests in the region, with representatives of cultural industries and businesses, and with other members nominated by SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, Southern and South East Arts, the South East Museums Agency, the Regional Archives Council, the Regional Tourism Boards, the Regional Sports Board, the libaries networking agency, English Heritage and Local Authority Associations.

17

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PRIORITY 2 The Task

Growth and Innovation - enable existing businesses to adapt, prosper and grow through innovation

The prosperity of the South East depends on the success of all its businesses, from small firms to global players. To support and enhance their performance and profitability, businesses need:
G

Effective links with the region’s knowledge base, enabling the effective commercialisation of technology and know-how Effective development of business supply chains and other collaborative networks within business clusters of strategic importance Effective and high quality business support, tailored for entrepreneurial and ambitious firms Regulation which supports innovation and improved efficiency

G

G

G

There is also a need for partners and businesses in the South East’s more prosperous areas to share their success with those areas of greater need and capacity for development.

Key Actions
1. Support knowledge transfer into the business community Initiatives taken by the South East’s universities under the Higher Education Innovation Fund are already helping them to reach out and provide better access to their resources of technology and know-how. However much more needs to be done. Enterprise Hubs and the South East Manufacturing Advisory Service will assist businesses to understand what may be available and to articulate their needs, turning knowledge into practical support for business. 2. Drive the adoption of best practice through networks, and ensure high quality business support A rich pattern of business-led networks will be sustained across the region, and businesses will be encouraged to recognise the benefits of collaboration to improve capability. The South East Regional Business Support Board will co-ordinate the work of SEEDA, the Small Business Service, the South East Business Links and other key delivery partners in ensuring that businesses and networks in rural and urban locations receive appropriate and integrated support of the highest order. 3. Support rural businesses by encouraging investment in new technologies, processes and markets Special attention will be paid to ensuring that businesses in rural areas gain access to appropriate support. Priorities will include continuing the process of recovery from Foot and Mouth Disease and flooding. The countryside is an important asset to the region, and its maintenance will be secured through action to promote a rural economy that adopts new technologies and diversifies its products and markets. 4. Encourage best practice in regulation, particularly in land use planning Dialogue between businesses, developers, planning authorities and statutory consultees will be promoted to ensure a modern, fair and efficient planning system that delivers high quality, sustainable development. 5. Encourage businesses to embrace the principles and practice of Corporate Social Responsibility A regional forum will be established to identify existing best practice across the region, focusing particularly on highlighting the achievements of leading businesses and on engaging business leaders to act as champions for Corporate Social Responsibility.

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Social Enterprise
The UK Government defines a social enterprise as ‘a business with primarily social objectives, whose surpluses are principally reinvested for that purpose in the business or community, rather than being driven by the need to maximise profit for shareholders and owners’18. The development of a vibrant social enterprise network in the South East is an essential ingredient of successful communities. The following actions will be taken forward to make social enterprises better businesses:
G

Creation of a best practice network of support for those involved in encouraging the start-up and growth of social enterprise across the region Review of existing business support and training to remove barriers to the growth and impact of the sector, which may lead to the creation of centres of excellence in the region Development of a community investment finance and social investment strategy to support the growth of the sector in the region, including the promotion of community and city bonds and a new Community Enterprise Fund Collaboration with other RDAs and the DTI’s Social Enterprise Unit to contribute to the implementation of the National Framework for Social Enterprise

G

G

G

Key Partners
SEEDA, South East England Regional Assembly, Government Office for the South East, Invest UK, professional institutions, businesses, South East Business Links, Environment Agency, universities and colleges, South East England Cultural Consortium, South East Sustainable Business Partnership, commercial and government research institutes, technology transfer bodies, economic partnerships, local authorities, voluntary sector.

Links to Other Objectives
Businesses also need: Successful People a labour market that connects demand for labour with a workforce that is available and with the right skills to support change, adaptation and growth Vibrant Communities an urban renaissance and an infrastructure of effective local services (including public services such as health) to underpin the traded sector Effective Infrastructure a supportive housing, transport and communications (especially Broadband), and regulatory infrastructure, together with a planning system that allows for effective innovation

18

Social Enterprise: A Strategy for Success, HM Government 2001

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Manufacturing
Manufacturing is an integral part of the technological revolution that we are living through; a revolution that goes beyond information and communications technology into products based on expert knowledge of chemistry and physics such as pharmaceuticals and new materials and control systems that are transforming many products and processes. Manufacturing cuts across many sectors, and its success is critical to the prosperity of the region. In the South East 25,000 manufacturing enterprises contribute £18 billion to the economy and employ more than 500,000 people, representing 19% of the South East business workforce. The South East achieves higher manufacturing value-added and exports than any UK region. We must ensure that manufacturing has a prosperous future in the South East.

The Challenge
Manufacturing businesses are facing severe competition from overseas and exporting is becoming increasingly difficult for standard services and products. As the pace of technological change speeds up and new industrial economies develop, so the future of the manufacturing sector must be based on innovation through continuous introduction of new and differentiated products and services. Twinned with this is the need for continuous specific productivity improvement. The National Strategy for Manufacturing, launched by the DTI in May 2002, points out that if the national economy matched the average performance of its competitors in the US, France and Germany, an additional £70 billion of additional revenue could be generated by the UK economy. The South East must generate its share of this additional output through encouraging supply chain development, quality improvements, and capability and diversification strategies appropriate to the region. It must achieve this by harnessing, and not degrading, the advantages of the region’s environmental assets. The region’s overall approach to manufacturing must be to support continuous improvement and raise productivity by:
G G

Encouraging investment in peoples’ skills Supporting best practice exchange through, for example, Enterprise Hubs and business networks Supporting technology transfer Bringing together companies which can benefit from working in partnership, through sectors and clusters and business networks Addressing skills and employment issues

G G

G

A Regional Centre of Manufacturing Excellence has already been established by SEEDA, working with the Engineering Employers Federation (South) and the South East Business Links. This provides support and hands on practical advice to small and medium manufacturing businesses across the region, and is supported by a national network of Centres of Expertise. Further support on specific issues is also being provided through the region’s Sector Groups and business networks. This approach underpins and informs all of the actions proposed under the objective of competitive businesses. It also shapes the priorities for working with key manufacturing sectors across the region, as set out in the accompanying RES Action Plan document.

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PRIORITY 3 The Task

International Relationships - encourage international business activity

Investment by international businesses in the region is a vital part of South East’s continued prosperity. As investment becomes increasingly mobile, success in attracting and retaining these businesses requires proactive marketing of the region with a comprehensive high quality service. The South East must retain the ability to attract the interest of a wide range of high value added companies and sustain its unique position as one of Europe’s premier locations for inward investment, particularly in high value added functions such as research and development and corporate headquarters. It must also seek to secure patterns of investment that meet the needs of all parts of the region, including those that currently benefit less from these flows. Large international businesses already established in the region are of fundamental importance to its economic health. Major creators of wealth, innovators, employers and purchasers in their own right, they also have the potential to drive up the performance of smaller businesses through supply chains and spin-outs. These pillar companies deserve special attention, ensuring their continued success in, and contribution to, the South East. International networks are often fragmented, yet they are vital to sustain our businesses and institutions in the global market place. International links are required to enable access to new market opportunities and leading edge technology, systems and processes. The South East exports more than any other region of the UK, making international trade vital to the growth of the region and to the UK as a whole. However, fewer than 10% of the region’s businesses currently export19, and there is considerable scope to increase both the numbers of exporters and the value of exports by individual companies.

Key Actions
1. Attract foreign direct investment both to reinforce the global competitiveness of the region’s priority sectors and to bring additional economic activity where it is needed In committing resources, regional and local agencies will place special emphasis on attracting investment into the priority areas for economic regeneration, particularly Thames Gateway Kent. It will also be recognised that, to attract continued inward investment in high added value activities in the more successful sub-regions, the South East must compete with the leading knowledge based regions in Europe. Success in this is essential to the overall competitiveness of the region’s economy, and indeed the UK’s economy, as a whole. 2. Implement a strategic programme of investor development This will be aimed at the region’s leading foreign-owned and domestic companies, building on existing work with economic partnerships to identify existing investors of strategic importance in order to foster their success, and capture the benefits of their growth for the region. 3. Develop and implement a network of Global Regions The task here is to increase the trading, investment and knowledge links between the South East and other leading knowledge-based regional economies around the world with the objective of building extensive relationships with such regions. There will be a central focus on inward and outward investment, technology transfer and joint ventures, and relations between universities, science parks and incubators.

19

Source: DTZ Pieda

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4. Support the delivery of the International Trade Strategy The South East International Trade Forum will continue to play a leading role in increasing the volume and value of international trade both from existing and new exporters, in order to generate wealth and prosperity for the South East. Individual members of the Forum such as Business Links, Chambers of Commerce and the Institute of Exporters will have a key role to play in the delivery of high quality business support.

Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, businesses, economic partnerships, local authorities, South East International Trade Forum20.

Links to Other Objectives
In order to share in the benefits of high levels of foreign direct investment and trade, less economically successful parts of the region will require supporting initiatives in: Successful People skills development to meet the needs of mobile investors Vibrant Communities inward investment patterns need to benefit the region’s deprived communities as well as maintaining the continued success of more prosperous sub-regions Effective Infrastructure investment in transport and communications (especially Broadband) to achieve high levels of connectivity

Sectors and Clusters
Businesses see themselves as operating within and across business sectors each with distinctive customer groups, supply chains, products, technologies, and skills requirements. A focus on the needs of key sectors in the region’s economy is therefore integral to this Strategy. Analysis of the region in the first Regional Economic Strategy identified 13 key sectors. Work undertaken subsequently with the 11 South East Economic Partnerships and others has reaffirmed the importance of these sectors. Each is well established within the region and each has major significance for the future of the region through meeting at least one of the following criteria: 1. Sectors driven by new and emerging technologies with transformational potential: pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and healthcare, information and communication technologies, media/creative industries, and environmental technologies. 2. Major employers and economic drivers throughout the region: tourism and leisure, freight transport and logistics, construction and property services, financial and professional services, and land based industries. 3. Manufacturing sectors with high value added growth potential, underpinning the region’s international trade performance: advanced engineering (including automotive), aerospace and defence, and marine technologies.

20

The South East International Trade Forum comprises representatives of SEEDA, Export Clubs, CBI, exporting businesses, Federation of Small Businesses, Institute of Directors, Trade Partners UK, South East Business Links, Small Business Service, Trade Associations, Engineering Employers Federation (South), South East Region Trades Union Congress and South East Chambers of Commerce and Industry

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SEEDA Sector Groups
Key sectors will be supported in a number of ways, encompassing skills and infrastructure development as well as specific aspects of business performance. For some sectors, SEEDA Sector Groups are already working on a regional basis to provide a strategic overview of the challenges for their sector, including opportunities and barriers to performance and how these can be tackled. Each has Task Forces to address skills and other issues, and each promotes strategic projects for business development and improvement. Sector Groups are led and driven by industry leaders who have been attracted because there is clear value to be gained by coming together at the regional level. They drive strategic actions that are best undertaken or co-ordinated at a regional level. Further Sector Groups will be developed as other sectors meet the criteria above. Where they are not met, other approaches are being adopted, in consultation with the industry itself and other partners. Sector groups have been established for:
G G G G G G G G

Aerospace and Defence Environmental Technologies Healthcare Technologies Freight Logisitics and Transport Marine Industries (including marine leisure services) Media Technologies and Telecoms Construction Tourism

Five of the eight current Sector Groups have a manufacturing core, and collaborate on a range of common issues such as skills development and the implementation of Lean Manufacturing techniques. An ICT Sector Group is under development. Financial and Business Services are key sectors in the South East but due to their diverse nature are likely to be supported by mechanisms other than a formal region-wide Sector Group.

Sectors and the Skills Agenda
Focusing on sectors provides a way of targeting effective interventions to meet industry specific needs for skills by influencing training providers to close the skills gaps. There are also generic learning and skills development needs across a range of industries and jobs, and spanning business, the public and voluntary sectors, most notably in management and leadership, customer service and ICT. These issues are addressed under the Successful people Objective of this Strategy, and are taken further in the Framework for Regional Employment and Skills Action.

Cluster Development
Specific clusters emerge within and across sector and geographical boundaries, and are driven by business trends such as specialisation, outsourcing and strategic alliances. Fully functioning clusters achieve competitive advantage through collaborative interaction, both between businesses and with sources of skills, technology and expertise. The South East has important concentrations and networks of businesses within its key sectors, and these offer significant clustering potential. This will be exploited through the aim of identifying and supporting between 20 and 40 active clusters across the region comparable with the best in the world. Many of these have already been identified in sub-regional priorities developed by South East Economic Partnerships, and are currently being championed through Sector Groups. The matrix overleaf shows the depth and breadth of business concentrations and networks that have been identified to date in consultation with economic partnerships across the region.

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Business Concentrations and Networks
Buckinghamshire

Brighton & Hove

Kent & Medway

Thames Valley

Milton Keynes

Isle of Wight

Advanced Engineering Aerospace Bio-technology Building and Construction Care Services Composites & Materials Creative Industries Defence Environmental Technologies Financial Services Health Services ICT Logistics Marine Technologies Medical equipment Motorsports & Automotive New Media Pharmaceuticals Publishing Research & Development Rural Industries and Tourism Telecommunications Tourism and Hospitality

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West Sussex

Oxfordshire

East Sussex

Hampshire

Surrey

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Successful People

Sustainable Development

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The Issues
The skills, capabilities and personal aspirations of the region’s people must be nurtured and grown if we are to rank alongside the world’s best. Currently, the relative success of the South East economy hides two real deficiencies:
G

The variations in GDP per head, employment rate and levels of educational attainment across the region; The failure to translate the underlying skills capabilities of the region into strong productivity growth.

G

These deficiencies can be remedied by tackling social exclusion and by a greater involvement of all partners in entrepreneurship, technology and a commitment to workforce development that will lead to smarter and more competitive businesses. Our overall approach over the life of this strategy must be to develop a culture of lifelong learning providing opportunities for all. Learning, work-related skills and employability lie at the heart of success for businesses, communities, individuals and the wider economy alike. Skills development is vital to securing productivity improvements throughout the workforce, by promoting creativity, flexibility and innovation. High-level management skills and education in entrepreneurship are needed to underpin accelerated business growth and formation. Accelerated takeup of advanced and user IT Skills and Science and Technology will be necessary for the development of a knowledge economy. Effective action to secure opportunities for local jobs and skills will be central to lifting the performance of less successful areas. The problem of low pay, which can exist alongside high overall employment levels, must be addressed. A strong and continued dialogue between employers, Trades Unions and the workforce will play a key role in anticipating and adapting to changes in the workplace. Prosperous businesses, thriving communities and a healthy economy will flow from a concerted and co-ordinated effort to make a learning culture a reality. Success will depend on involving and encouraging everyone to play an active part, and demonstrating the added impact that learning can have. The region faces major challenges which can only be effectively tackled by the combined resource and capability of organisations working in this field. These include Local Learning and Skills Councils, learning institutions, private providers, the Government Office for the South East, Jobcentre Plus, employers, trade unions, voluntary organisations, community partnerships, SEEDA and others. The South East will only realise its full potential if it is founded on a healthy labour market, comprising:
G

A strong and dynamic demand side, generating not just an appropriate volume of jobs, but also the right balance and quality of jobs A strong and responsive supply side, generating a workforce of appropriate size, location, skills and capabilities An interaction between the two that produces an efficient, equitable labour market that is balanced within the region and across regional boundaries.

G

G

This is illustrated overleaf.

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Components of a Healthy Labour Market21
Demand Side of the Labour Market Adequate volume of jobs Functioning of the Labour Market Labour market efficiency - effectively matches jobs to people (advice, guidance, placement services) - flexibility - enables career progression and work- life balance Labour market equity - even and fair distribution of opportunities for individuals - even and fair distribution of opportunities for localities Supply Side of the Labour Market Adequate volume of supply - workforce size and location - economic activity rates

Balance/quality of jobs - range of industries - range of skill requirements - range of pay levels - range of working arrangements (full-time/part-time; employee/selfemployed) Dynamism of the labour market - entrepreneurship/innovation - new firm generation

Adequate quality of supply - basic skills - vocational skills - higher level skills - attitude/motivation - workforce health/well-being - voluntary/unpaid labour Responsiveness of supply - renewal of skills - lifelong learning

Effective and balanced interaction with other labour markets - in adjacent regions - nationally/internationally

Priorities
The objective is that by 2012, the South East will be one of the top 15 regions in the world in terms of labour productivity and employment rates. There are four priorities supporting this objective:
G

Skills for prosperity – to underpin productivity improvements, adaptability to change, sector development and increased entrepreneurship Participation in prosperity – to create labour market equity and balance across the region Learning for all – encouraging non-learners to learn and to make informed choices about learning and employment opportunities Social dialogue – enabling the workforce to be fully involved in anticipating and preparing for change in the workplace, and identifying best employment practice

G

G

G

Progress will also be necessary against other objectives:
Competitive Businesses working with businesses to anticipate change Vibrant Communities ensuring all communities gain access to learning and its benefits Effective Infrastructure ensuring that housing, transport and communications support the functioning of a healthy labour market

21

From A Healthy Labour Market for the South East? Institute of Employment Studies, commissioned by SEEDA on behalf of the Regional Employment and Skills Forum 2002

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PRIORITY 4 The Task

Skills for Prosperity

The South East excels in many aspects of the knowledge economy, but we lag behind high performing regions in other countries in terms of labour productivity. Skills development plays a key part in improving business performance. For example, if we are to make the very most of investments in new technology, we must equip our workforce to harness the gains that technology can bring. We also need a strategy to develop the managers and leaders of today and tomorrow, ensuring that they thrive on change and realising the full potential of their workforce. Skills development is vital at all levels and across all employers. Some of our most pressing needs are at technician, intermediate and lower levels. A wide range of business activities, including micro-businesses in rural areas, require support to both re-skill and up-skill their employees in order to develop a diverse and vibrant rural economy. The land-based sector is facing radical restructuring which will need a multi-skilled workforce, including support for vocational training. And strong skills development across core support services, encompassing both public agencies and personal services, will be necessary to ensure that the region works. Investment in skills will be needed to support and sustain the region’s key sectors. This includes ensuring the region has a strong service sector, and a public sector capable of supporting sustainable growth of the knowledge economy. We must also address generic skills needs, for example in the use of ICT, that cut across sector boundaries.

Key Actions
1. Ensure skills support for sector and cluster development Sector specific learning centres will be established, building on existing centres and new developments such as New Technology Institutes and Centres of Vocational Excellence. There will be particular focus on the land based sector. The number of people undertaking science, technology and maths training will be increased, especially at technician level, and greater support will be given to the development of engineering and manufacturing sectors. The development of ICT skills across the workforce will also be encouraged, recognising these as a key factor underpinning success across the business spectrum. This will include encouraging higher numbers of women to take up ICT training opportunities. 2. Promote management and entrepreneurial development The substantial expansion of informal management development programmes will be supported through mentoring, business networks and short relevant business courses using technology. A culture of entrepreneurship will be embedded, including entrepreneurial education to influence attitudes throughout the whole education process to ensure effective exploitation of knowledge research, and enhanced rates of new business formation. 3. Enhance the regional role of universities The region’s universities will be encouraged to play an active role in contributing towards the success of the region through skills development, transfer of knowledge and expanding the number of graduates working within smaller companies, building on existing graduate employment schemes such as STEP and the Teaching Company Scheme. Access to higher education will be further enhanced by implementing the Partnership For Progression Initiative. Additional routes to higher education will be explored, including remote learning and outreach as well as within the workplace.

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4. Promote workplace learning Workplace learning centres, part funded by employers, will be encouraged. Centres will support training for the full range of employers in the private, public and voluntary sectors. Where appropriate, centres will be linked to Enterprise Hubs and Gateways. These centres will provide a place for people to both work and learn. Further support will be provided for those wishing to learn within the home with the development of online and face-to-face tutor/coaches. 5. Encourage Work Life Balance Work with businesses and other employers will identify, encourage and promote human resource strategies that motivate staff, reduce sickness absence, encourage flexible working and promote health at work.

Key Partners
SEEDA, Local Learning and Skills Councils, local education authorities, Sector Skills Councils, Sector Groups, Universities, Further Education Colleges, businesses, Trades Unions, NHS, business support organisations, Economic Partnerships, Learn Direct.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses these initiatives will be closely integrated with Enterprise Hubs and Enterprise Gateways, and also with priority sectors and clusters Vibrant Communities skills development initiatives must be closely linked to the overall strategies for priority regeneration areas to deliver an urban renaissance Effective Infrastructure broadband connectivity will be essential if skills initiatives are to maximise their impact

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Framework for Regional Employment and Skills Action
SEEDA has welcomed the opportunity of facilitating the development of the new Framework for Regional Employment and Skills Action (FRESA) by the Government. In response, key partners involved in employment and skills came together to form a Regional Employment and Skills Forum to take forward the development of the first FRESA for the South East. The FRESA takes a fresh look at the region’s labour markets and explores how well they operate to provide employers with the skills they require and individuals with the jobs, development opportunities and guidance they deserve. It sets out a collaborative approach to gear the regional labour market to the achievement of the sustainable economic and social objectives as identified in the Regional Economic Strategy. Building a ‘healthy labour market’ is vital for the region’s sustained growth and the FRESA details key strategic objectives and actions to maintain economic performance, competitiveness and the essential services supplied by the public sector, voluntary and community groups. A healthy labour market comprises:
G

Employers from the private, public, voluntary and community sectors who engage with intermediary agencies to share intelligence, and design and operate initiatives that shape the supply of skilled workers they need to compete in competitive, and international markets; Individuals who recognise the need to constantly update and improve their skills to maintain and boost their employability; A culture of enterprise and innovation that is highly prized and recognised as the foundations for success for both employers and employed; Supporting agencies that are knowledgeable and responsive to market failure through the design of solutions that are timely, effective and sustainable.

G

G

G

The FRESA spells out the distinctive contribution of all partners within an overall collaborative context, giving focus on what needs to happen in the region to create and maintain a healthy labour market, in which:
G G G

a wide range of lasting job opportunities exist; every individual has the opportunity and skills to find employment; employers are able to recruit the people they need with the skills they require; and the workforce develops in order to improve productivity and enhance the employability of individuals.

G

The FRESA South East and Action Plan can be downloaded from the SEEDA website at: www.seeda.co.uk/seeda_documents

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Care for Dependants
The provision of appropriate and accessible care for dependants is essential to release the full potential of people with caring responsibilities. It plays an important role in maximising the availability of people to work, and also underpins the career progression of those in work. The role of the RES in relation to childcare and other forms of dependant care will be to:
G

Bring together employers, workforces and communities to identify specific needs and issues; Encourage businesses to address this issue as an early priority for the regional forum on Corporate Social Responsibility; Identify innovative measures already being taken by businesses to facilitate childcare and other forms of dependent care through direct support for provision, as well as through changes in working practices; Promote and encourage the wider adoption of practical solutions that work.

G

G

G

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PRIORITY 5 The Task

Participation in Prosperity

The South East currently has a high overall employment rate. However, this disguises pockets where the workforce is under utilised, and groups who are excluded from work because of inflexible work practices, terms and conditions and restrictive and discriminatory recruitment practices. People living in rural areas need the relevant skills and opportunities to make the most of employment opportunities. We must engage those excluded from work and develop those in work to their full potential. This does not mean simply directing people into paid employment; the real task is to maximise participation in employment, learning and voluntary / community activities, suiting the needs and capabilities of each individual. We must also explore retaining more of our resident skills base within the region, while recognising the strong economic links between the South East and London. Current commuting patterns to London and within the region contribute significantly to congestion, add costs to both businesses and individuals, and result in longer working days. We must develop sustainable work practices to ease this where appropriate. A key step to raising the aspirations of the region’s population is to overcome the basic skills deficiency across the region. It is unacceptable that in this day and age, the South East still has some one million people unable to achieve basic standards in reading, writing and mathematics.

Key Actions
1. Maximise employability and involvement for all, especially groups facing exclusion, discrimination and labour market disadvantage Local employment action plans will be developed across the region. These will engage all relevant partners, and will target both areas of labour shortage and deprived urban and rural areas. Tailored approaches will be developed to meet the needs of particular groups in the labour force, including women, the over 50s, refugees, people with disabilities, minority ethnic and faith groups. Research will also explore patterns of labour market disadvantage experienced through sexual orientation or religious belief. Local labour initiatives will be a feature of these plans. Employers will be encouraged to play a role in the provision of services and facilities for carers, together with flexible employment practices that accommodate caring responsibilities. Support will be provided for the community and voluntary sector, both as an important source of paid employment and as a focus for volunteering. 2. Develop sustainable work practices for a more effective workforce Good practice in the recruitment and retention of people will be researched and promoted. An initial focus will be on public services and construction, where current recruitment and retention problems sit alongside a sharp forecast growth in jobs. A task force will be established to review good practice to overcome labour shortages in areas of economic success. 3. Implement a comprehensive network of basic skills provision A holistic solution will be developed, engaging all relevant partners and funding streams. This will ensure that there are sufficient tutors, the right infrastructure, and continued support and financial help to employers to release employees. Basic skills will be promoted alongside provision of ICT skills and, where appropriate, financial planning skills. The focus will be on those geographical areas where basic skill needs are highest, and in those sectors with high numbers of people with skill needs.

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Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Jobcentre Plus, Local Learning and Skills Councils, South East Business Links, local authorities, urban and rural regeneration partnerships, businesses, Connexions Partnerships, RAISE, SEREN, Faith Forum, trade unions, employers, Basic Skills Agency, Voluntary sector, Employers Forum on Disability, Prince’s Trust, South East England Regional Consortium for Asylum Seekers and Refugees, Business in the Community, lifelong learning partnerships, local authorities, Local Strategic Partnerships, Parish and Town Councils, Rural Community Councils, Sport England, Southern and South East Arts, South East Museums, Libraries and Archives Council.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses key intelligence gathering role for Enterprise Hubs, Enterprise Gateways and Sector Groups; link to Corporate Social Responsibility Vibrant Communities close collaboration with regeneration partnerships, and with local authorities, to deliver an urban renaissance

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PRIORITY 6 The Task

Learning for All

Perhaps our biggest challenge is to demonstrate that learning pays – economically, socially, and from the perspective of personal growth. Why should people learn, and what’s in it for them? The value of learning needs to be illustrated clearly for the individual, business and the community. Having captured people’s interest, learning and development must be delivered as the customer wants it, not as suppliers prescribe. Our approach to learning requires a radical overhaul. The use of new technology allows us to reach out to new learners, using ‘e’-learning to develop new and attractive ways of learning for pleasure, employment or community service. But before raising aspirations, the first task will often be to build confidence and find ways around a range of obstacles.

Key Actions
1. Prepare businesses and the workforce for future changes in the workplace Intelligence on sector, occupation and employment forecasts must be interpreted and disseminated to prepare and develop people for the changes coupled changing work practices. The Social Dialogue Forum, comprising employers and employee representatives, will disseminate good practice and encourage policies that demonstrate the future of work in the region. An effective on-line advice and guidance service for all adults will also be developed, making this intelligence accessible to the widest possible audience. 2. Reach out to communities Learning will be integrated alongside other pursuits such as leisure, shops and alongside other services such as health centres, libraries, village halls and community facilities and services. Pilot projects will explore the effectiveness of linking learning alongside sports, cultural and faith facilities. There will be a particular emphasis on improving the skills levels of the voluntary sector. 3. Reach out to workplaces and improve education – business links Outreach centres including workplace learning centres will be developed, building on existing centres of learning that are recognised as employing good practice. The development of workplace advocates, peer mentors and union learning representatives will be supported, especially in companies where skill levels are low or out of date. An awareness of the world of work, and the opportunities and rewards available, will be instilled through the whole education system. Employers will be engaged to offer young people work experience that provides a stimulating insight into the world of work. Vocational routes will be promoted, providing more career choices for individuals and encouraging the development of all in the skills required for the knowledge economy.

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Key Partners
SEEDA, regeneration partnerships, local authorities, businesses, Trades Unions, Local Learning and Skills Councils, Local Learning Partnerships, Education and Business Link Organisations, Skills Insight, Universities, Learn Direct, Information Advice and Guidance Partnerships, Connexions, National Institute for Adult and Continuing Education, Campaign for Learning, Rural Community Councils, RAISE, SEREN, Faith Forum.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses strong links to work on Corporate Social Responsibility Vibrant Communities community outreach work will link with broader initiatives in deprived areas and excluded communities

Developing Effective Approaches to Partnership
SEEDA has already gained experience of bringing together managers and workforce representatives to discuss issues of common concern. Future actions include the following:
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Human Resource Managers will be brought together to share effective approaches Likewise, union and workforce representatives will be brought together to learn from each other’s experience Consultation with these ‘frontline’ representatives will assist with the successful implementation of the Regional Economic Strategy An occasional newsletter will be published A guide for workplace representatives and Human Resource Managers will be produced on the Regional Economic Strategy, social dialogue and the South East Economy

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Training materials will also be developed to support social dialogue around the Regional Economic Strategy, including links to local health inequalities reduction programmes.

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PRIORITY 7 The Task

Social Dialogue

The region’s ability to sustain economic success is dependent on the ability and willingness of its current and potential workforce to respond to the changing world of work and society and adopt forward-looking approaches. To work effectively, these approaches must build on an active and collaborative partnership involving all sections of the region’s workforce. The South East therefore needs to promote the development of real and enduring workplace partnerships involving employers and Trade Unions, managers and workplace representatives. Business strategies are more effective if they are owned jointly by employers and employees. Participation and inclusiveness are increasingly important to the success of modern businesses and organisations. Social dialogue – the mechanism which enables this joint working – not only benefits individual businesses but can benefit the region as a whole by helping to secure investment. The region enjoys constructive industrial relations, and this should be actively promoted as a business benefit.

Key Actions
1. Develop and promote models for social dialogue The region’s Social Dialogue Forum comprises employers, trade unions and worker representatives. It will be developed and supported as the primary means of engaging employer and worker representatives in the future development of the region’s workforce. Working within this framework, social partner dialogue will be promoted at the regional, sub regional and local levels. 2. Encourage ‘smarter’ ways of working The Social Dialogue Forum will facilitate the research into and sharing of best workforce practice, from within and outside the region, concentrating on issues such as worklife balance, equality and health and safety. The Forum will also input to key areas such as skills, productivity, investment, transport and infrastructure, where employee participation and inclusiveness can have a direct impact on the region’s economic success. Larger regional forums and conferences will be set up to disseminate this information and develop action plans/pilot projects. There will be a drive to bring together information provided by employers into one place to provide a reality check against more formal data collection methods. 3. Engage social partners in the regional economic agenda It is essential that those who represent the views and interests of the workforce are fully engaged in the regional economic development agenda. Education programmes and briefings will be developed for trades union representatives at all levels within the region. Employers, employees and key partners will work together to anticipate, prepare for and respond to change in the workplace.

Key Partners
SEEDA, South East Region TUC, Trades Unions, businesses, employer representative organisations, voluntary sector, public sector

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses constructive industrial relations in the region to be promoted as a strength in attracting and retaining foreign direct investment
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Vibrant Communities

Sustainable Development

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The Issues
The South East can and should be a region in which we achieve social progress, which recognises the needs of everyone. This means strong urban and rural communities in good health and free from high levels of crime and discrimination, with ready access to jobs, education, homes, services and amenities. The overall prosperity of the South East masks a highly uneven spread of wealth within the region. Where people live also affects how they live. It influences their access to jobs, and their access to services such as shops, schools, health and leisure facilities. The sheer size of the South East means that the actual number of excluded people in the region is comparable to and can exceed those in regions that are better known for their high levels of deprivation. Disadvantage and social exclusion are found in both urban and rural areas, and their eradication represents one of the greatest challenges to the region as a whole. Social exclusion is economically inefficient; it represents a waste of peoples’ potential in a region where labour is often in short supply. It generates unnecessary costs in welfare and health services and benefits, and impacts on issues such as crime and community safety, which can affect all society. Combating social exclusion through economic inclusion is therefore integral to all the themes of the Regional Economic Strategy. But this is a complex issue, and quick fixes will not bring sustainable improvements. A joined up response is vital, carrying forward the commitments made in the South East’s Social Inclusion Statement22. To achieve our vision for the South East we need to bring about an urban and rural renaissance. This requires the design and management of the physical environment, together with policies to foster social inclusion and economic success, that achieve a step change in the quality of life and in the case of our urban areas make towns and cities locations of choice. Such change can not be achieved unless local people are part of the process.

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South East Region Social Inclusion Statement, Government Office for the South East 2002

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Thames Gateway Kent
The Thames Gateway is Europe’s largest regeneration initiative, and is of national importance. The Government’s Thames Gateway Strategy aims to maximise the development potential of areas to the East of London. North Kent, comprising Dartford, Gravesham, Medway and Swale, is a key component of the Thames Gateway. Large scale, mainly brownfield development is planned for the area, generating new jobs, homes and infrastructure resulting in an improved quality of life and a transformation of the existing environment. The Regional Economic Strategy re-affirms, the regeneration of North Kent as a regional and national priority and a prime focus for investment. Supported by SEEDA, the Thames Gateway Kent Partnership has recently published the North Kent Area Investment Framework, which identifies a vision and priorities for implementation over the next 20 years. The Framework sets out the infrastructure requirements needed to:
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Realise the potential of major, mostly brownfield, sites Greatly improve transport and communications in a sustainable way Transform the environment and image of an area affected by industrial decline Raise the area’s competitiveness substantially by supporting new initiatives to boost enterprise and innovation Regenerate communities affected by decline Ensure that new communities developments are fully integrated with existing

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Ensure that the people of North Kent are able to access the opportunities created to the full

SEEDA will provide funding and other forms of support in order to make substantial progress against these priorities within the context of the Area Investment Framework.

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Priorities
The objective is that by 2012, the gap between the most deprived parts of the region and the rest will have narrowed by at least 10%. There are four priorities supporting this objective:
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Enabling community participation and local leadership – placing people at the centre of regeneration Making towns and cities work – securing an urban renaissance across the region Connecting diversity with prosperity – harnessing the creativity and innovation of the South East’s diverse communities and promote good equalities practices Supporting the development of sound community infrastructures and services – recognising the links between economic prosperity, health and community safety

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Progress will also be necessary against other objectives:
Competitive Businesses business success and investment needs to reach all parts of the region, especially deprived areas and communities that are currently under performing Successful People learning and employment opportunities need to reach those who are currently excluded from these opportunities Effective Infrastructure transport and communications infrastructures will be key elements in the regeneration of both urban and rural areas Sustainable Use of Natural Resources many of the areas most in need of economic revival also have access to major environmental assets which could play a part in that revivial

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Hastings and Bexhill Task Force
SEEDA has joined forces with Hastings Borough Council, Rother District Council, East Sussex County Council and the Government Office for the South East to develop and implement a £400 million regeneration package for the Hastings and Bexhill area. The vision is to achieve an integrated approach to the sustainable regeneration of the area, transforming it into a dynamic and vibrant location bursting with opportunities and with people ready and able to take these forward. Building on extensive consultation with local people and businesses, a Five Point Plan has been agreed with the following themes:
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Urban renaissance – transformation of buildings and homes in Hastings and Bexhill Education – increasing education opportunities in the area Enterprise – providing support for local businesses Broadband – enabling mass market high speed Internet access Transport – improving transport links into and within the area

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The strategy breaks new ground in linking physical master-planning with a sustainability appraisal and community consultation. This pioneering package has now won the support of the Government, which has made a firm financial commitment to support the package and will ‘join up’ assistance and funding across six Government Departments of State.

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PRIORITY 8 The Task

Community Participation and Local Leadership

Communities need to be engaged in partnership structures to access information and shape policy in order to play their full part. Community involvement is being driven forward by initiatives such as:
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the drive for public service improvement through neighbourhood renewal and best value, for example; the development of Local Strategic Partnerships as the key vehicles for coordinating improved and integrated public services and initiatives in all local authority areas; changes to the planning system and the encouragement of increased community involvement.

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In addition, the extensive existing networks of community and voluntary activity across the region represent a major resource. The task for the Regional Economic Strategy is to connect with these initiatives and networks, to make an appropriate contribution to the development of communities’ capabilities, and to encourage urban and rural environments where individuals supported and enabled to become fully involved in the life of their area.

Key Actions
1. Engage communities in existing and new partnership structures The development of Local Strategic Partnerships will be supported, particularly in the more deprived communities, together with the better integration of partnership structures. Community engagement will be a necessary part of this process with progress measured through the use of performance indicators as development tools. Partners will be encouraged to co-ordinate their strategies, priorities and funding through the preparation of Area Investment Frameworks. Regional co-ordination initiatives such as the South East Funders’ Forum will be supported; and efforts will be made to maximise European funding opportunities for the region. Integrated support for rural communities will be promoted in the more deprived areas of the region (including rural areas designated by Europe) and small rural towns, stimulating both social and economic regeneration. 2. Addressing deprivation wherever it occurs Co-ordinated action will be taken to address concentrations of deprivation in urban and rural communities. However, deprivation is not simply a matter of geography. Communities of interest that cut across boundaries are of equal importance in combating exclusion. Approaches and initiatives will be developed to ensure that the needs of these communities are met.

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Social Inclusion and Rural Communities
If communities are to be sustainable, they need to be nurtured as vibrant places where a wide range of people can choose to live and work. Over recent decades the age profile of rural communities has changed as younger people have moved away and elderly people have moved in. The affordability gap between rich and poor has increased in rural areas. Affordable housing is essential for key workers, young people and young families. Accessibility to services, community facilities, markets and local jobs is critical to people living and working in the countryside. Rural areas are continuing to lose essential services. Rural transport is a vital link that connects communities. There are areas of concentrated rural deprivation in the region that need to be tackled. However, there are also pockets of deprivation in most rural communities. Those socially excluded in the more wealthy areas feel particularly isolated and excluded from the rest of their more prosperous community. Small rural towns play key role, proving an important focus for people living in surrounding villages and countryside, providing jobs and essential services. They also are well placed to maximise new opportunities to improve the prospects of rural areas across the region. However, in every community throughout the South East there are individuals and, in exceptional cases, whole communities who are not sharing in the general prosperity of the region. They are at risk of becoming excluded from the quality of life enjoyed by the rest of the community. Research by the Rural Community Councils in many different parts of the region has demonstrated that this dispersed pattern of exclusion is a particular feature of the South East, especially its rural areas. There are areas where disadvantage and exclusion are more concentrated. Among the causes of exclusion in rural areas are:
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Employment in an occupation where the wages are out of step with housing costs; Youth, old age or disability; Poor educational or training attainment; Caring responsibilities.

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Whilst living in a rural community can be a benefit, it can just as easily become an overwhelming burden. Services are distant, public transport is less viable and the supply of housing for people on lower incomes cannot keep pace with demand. Factors that create exclusion in rural communities are similar to those in urban areas but the proportion of local population affected means that solutions cannot be crudely applied through the use of area based targeting as they might be in large towns. Meeting these challenges requires an approach to which all partners to the Regional Economic Strategy are committed and be sustained over the long term. The best approach will be one that finds solutions at local level with local communities whilst also ensuring that regional policies on housing, planning, transport and skills contribute to solutions and do not make the problems worse.

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3. Build communities’ capacity through regional networks and community managed organisations Networks will be developed to support community capacity building as a means of tackling social exclusion. The unique role that the voluntary and community sector can play in the development of the South East will be recognised and supported, and a regional compact will be concluded with the sector. The growth and development of community managed organisations (including development trusts, neighbourhood regeneration organisations and tenant management organisations) will be encouraged, to drive regeneration in deprived areas. Community management of assets will be promoted wherever appropriate, and supported through funding and training. Action will be taken to promote the development of community participation skills amongst the professions involved in development and regeneration, and to build the capacity of communities to take their ideas forward. 4. Enable and encourage participation in community activities Success as a region includes recognising, valuing and enabling the vital role that community, voluntary and faith groups play in maintaining a healthy community. A feature of a successful region will be that community, voluntary and faith groups play a key role in maintaining a healthy community. Support will be given to develop participation and community leadership skills across all communities, making full use of existing structures.

Key Partners
SEEDA, local authorities, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Environment Agency, Countryside Agency, Groundwork, RAISE, SEREN, Faith Forum, Rural Community Councils, South East Funders Forum, Local Strategic Partnerships, regeneration partnerships, Parish and Town Councils.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses Enterprise Gateways, support for social enterprise, Corporate Social Responsibility, international business activity Successful People learning centres, local employment action plans, basic skills, community learning initiatives

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New Partnership Arrangements
With the Single Regeneration Budget programme coming to an end by 2006, commitments to existing SRB schemes need to be accompanied by the development of new arrangements to support local regeneration. These need to focus particularly, although not exclusively, on deprived areas. SEEDA is developing and working through new sub-regional delivery arrangements with local partners in priority regeneration areas. These will provide opportunities for joined up working and the exchange of best practice. These arrangements will encourage cross boundary working across a wide agenda of economic, physical and social/community interests and will link sub- regional economic strategies with local strategies. Nine areas will be addressed through these arrangements:
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Thames Gateway Kent East Kent – including the former East Kent Coalfield Channel Corridor Kent Coastal East Sussex Brighton and Hove Coastal West Sussex Portsmouth and South East Hampshire Southampton The Isle of Wight

The preparation of Area Investment Frameworks is key to this integrated approach, with Local Strategic Partnerships identifying local needs and priorities and developing a strategic framework which ensures community engagement.

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PRIORITY 9 The Task

Urban Renaissance - achieve an urban renaissance by making towns and cities work

The South East is characterised by a large number of small and medium sized towns and cities, together with extensive suburban development. Some urban areas, such as within the Thames Gateway, Ashford and Milton Keynes, are designated for major growth. But across the region, urban renaissance is about creating attractive, enjoyable, liveable places. Key components of an urban renaissance are careful planning and design, improving the quality and safety of the public realm, healthy town centres with a mix of attractions and the active involvement of communities in the process of change. Urban densities in many areas need to rise in order to accommodate predicted growth while also minimising car use, achieving a more sustainable level of development and meeting national targets for housing on recycled land. One of the main attractions of urban living is proximity to facilities such as shops, education, cultural and leisure amenities, and transport hubs. Higher densities make this an economic possibility. Good design is at the heart of urban renaissance. A range of tools can be used more widely to facilitate good design and procurement processes can be used to set out expectations. There is a clear need to develop core skills and strengthen links between professions. At the heart of the skills agenda is also recognition of the role of communities in transforming their urban areas and the need to ensure that they have both the opportunity and the skills to take on this role. During the life of this Regional Economic Strategy, the Government’s Communities Plan will encourage an integrated approach to secure sustainable communities. This will include both the building of new communities and the rebuilding of existing communities. Local authorities play a key role in showing leadership and commitment to delivering an urban renaissance. South East England Regional Assembly is facilitating this process, for example through seminars and an investigation of measures to overcome financial barriers to large scale mixed use developments in the region.

Key Actions
1. Secure an urban renaissance in Thames Gateway Kent Thames Gateway is Europe’s largest regeneration project, straddling three regions. Completion of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link with the new international station at Ebbsfleet, together with domestic use of that link, are critical ingredients of a major development programme including Kent Thameside, Medway and Sittingbourne – Sheppey. Implementation will be highly complex, requiring regional and local partnership structures and substantial resources to ensure that existing communities benefit from change, and that the standard of master planning of new development is of the highest order. This will be undertaken within the context of the Communities Plan. 2. Support the major growth areas of Ashford and Milton Keynes Ashford and Milton Keynes are recognised at local, regional and national levels as major growth areas. The completion of major feasibility studies during Autumn 2002 sets a clear framework for the scale and broad direction of growth in each area. Appropriate implementation mechanisms will be developed in each area, with SEEDA working with Government, English Partnerships, the Regional Assembly and local authorities to progress implementation machinery, again within the context of the Communities Plan.

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3. Promote sustainable forms of urban development Initiatives to increase the health, safety, vitality and viability of town centres and suburban environments will be supported. These will specifically include assisting the development of mixed use urban and suburban environments, healthy evening economies and new uses for historic buildings where appropriate. Higher density development will be supported in town centres and urban areas where appropriate. The best use of limited land resources by encouraging sustainable development that allows people to access local facilities on foot, cycle or public transport. The integration of arts, heritage and culture with urban renewal will be actively promoted. 4. Promote the region’s small rural towns as a key focus for Sustainable Development Small rural towns are recognised as a major asset and a focus for truly Sustainable Development. In order to capitalise on this asset, initiatives will be developed to ensure that communities are supported in developing broadly based action plans that address social, economic and environmental initiatives. The scope to use small rural towns as a focus to develop local sustainable economies will be addressed directly, through local supply chain initiatives, local training and skills development, affordable housing to serve the local economy and the development of local public transport infrastructure. 5. Raise standards of urban quality and design in the South East Skills development programmes will be used to develop and enhance the skills involved in urban design, planning, regeneration, land reclamation and community management. This will be facilitated through the establishment of Centres of Excellence for training, dissemination of best practice and expertise, the development of a network of Architecture Centres across the region, and the work of the Regional Design Panel. The preparation of development briefs and master plans will be encouraged as mechanisms for strengthening the quality of urban development. Communities will be fully engaged in the process of delivering an urban renaissance through access to the appropriate skills, support and resources.

Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, local authorities, Local Strategic Partnerships, English Heritage, English Partnerships, Groundwork, landowners, developers, professional institutions, local community bodies, urban designers and architects, South East Rural Towns Partnership, South East Rural Community Councils, Parish and Town Councils, Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, South East England Cultural Consortium.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses ensure healthy rates of business start-ups, and encourage successful adaptation to change among the existing business base Successful People maximise skills for prosperity, and participation in prosperity Effective Infrastructure housing, brownfield land, transport Sustainable Use of Natural Resources maximise use of environmental capital

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Creative, Cultural and Sport Sector

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The Creative, Cultural and Sport Sector is an important contributor to the economic and social life of the region. Additionally, culture, arts, heritage and sport add to the quality of life and health of the region for communities and visitors alike. The richness and diversity of the region’s cultural and sporting assets are a major factor in attracting inward investment and the outstanding historic and natural heritage provides a unique resource for the tourism industry. Sport, arts, heritage and culture play a major role in successful communities, contributing positively to health promotion and crime reduction, and can be used as key tools to engage excluded groups. Additionally, sport and the arts in particular can play a significant role in promoting lifelong learning, and in creating pathways to employment and skills development. The sector is highly diverse embracing the following activities:
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Media and Digital Art and Design Heritage and Information Management Tourism, Sport and Recreation

A recent report commissioned by SEEDA, the South East England Cultural Consortium and regional cultural and sports bodies24 revealed the extent of the economic contribution made by the sector:
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Employment in the sector grew by 28.4% in the South East in the period 1995 – 2000; almost double the average for England as a whole; About 560,000 people are employed in the sector in the South East, 19% of England’s total employment in this sector; Together, the South East and London account for over half of England’s employment in this sector; Employment in the sector accounts for over one in eight of the region’s workforce; In addition 90-100,000 self-employed people work in the sector in the region; Creative, cultural and sport activities in the South East generate a turnover of £46.5bn; 54% of the region’s workforce in this sector is involved in content origination; About 51,000 VAT registered businesses and organisations in this sector are located in the region.

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The creative, cultural and sport sector also contributes substantially to the innovative and creative vibrancy of the region’s businesses and to its growing knowledge economy. The South East England Cultural Consortium has produced a cultural strategy for the South East The Cultural Cornerstone25. SEEDA is committed to working with the Cultural Consortium and regional cultural and sports bodies in progressing the resultant Action Plan which seeks to bring added value to the South East’s cultural, sporting and leisure activities.
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Creative, cultural and sporting activities comprise: Advertising, Architecture, Archives, The Arts and Antiques Market, Countryside Recreation, Crafts, Design, Designer Fashion, Digital Media, Film and Video, Historic Sites, Buildings and Houses, Interactive Leisure Software, Libraries, Information and Knowledge Management, Museums, Music, Performing arts, Publishing: Software and Computer Services, Sports, Tourism, Television and Radio. Creative and Cultural Industries An Economic Impact Study for South East England by David Powell Associates, August 2002 The Cultural Cornerstone Strategy for the development of cultural activity and its benefits in the South East, South East England Cultural Consortium, June 2001

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PRIORITY 10 The Task

Connecting Diversity with Prosperity

The South East has a wealth of diversity in its people, but it is an asset we have yet to engage fully in the economic success of the region. Unlocking the potential of our diverse communities offers the region new talent and creativity, new perspectives and new markets. We should want to offer equal opportunity for all as of right, but we also need to recognise the benefits for all of engaging the wider community.

Key Actions
1. Establish mechanisms and processes to engage the region’s diverse communities A regional strategy to celebrate and promote diversity will be developed, recognising the requirements for public bodies to adopt the Race Relations Amendment Act 2000 and other forthcoming equalities legislation. The development of the South East Race Equality Network (the black and ethnic minority voluntary network in the region) will be supported, in order that it can fully engage minority ethnic communities in the economic development of the region. The capacity of diverse communities will be developed by:
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Commissioning support through local advice networks Building the capacity of community champions Encouraging and enabling diverse communities to access information and best practice on regeneration and social inclusion

2. Identify and promote best practice to demonstrate that diversity pays Research will be undertaken to identify international best practice. Follow up actions will be developed to combat discrimination in the labour market and identify the particular issues that flow from ethnicity, disability, age, gender, faith and sexual orientation. A sustained campaign on equality of opportunity will be implemented in conjunction with business, to demonstrate that diversity pays, disseminating best practice to the business community and public sector.

Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Countryside Agency, businesses, public sector employers, Trades Unions, SEREN, RAISE, Rural Community Councils, other local community and voluntary groups.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses Corporate Social Responsibility Successful People Social Dialogue Forum

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PRIORITY 11

Community Infrastructure and Services - support the development of sound community infrastructures and services

The Task
Successful local economies need infrastructures and services that meet individual needs without discrimination or bias. There must be affordable housing, accessible transport, adequate health and childcare, opportunities to access learning and access to suitable cultural and recreational activities, and the provision of a safe environment to conduct community life. The strategies of individual areas should link into, and be supported at, the regional and sub-regional level to ensure that the location of new industry, transport, housing and retailing are co-ordinated to good purpose. Health inequalities in the region are profound, and there are close links between health and other forms of social deprivation. On almost all the measures of mortality and illness, incidence amongst the poorest people in the region is up to two or three times higher than amongst the affluent. Ill health is a specific barrier to employment and economic growth.

Key Actions
1. Ensure a healthy region Health requirements need to be taken into account in planning new development. New and existing initiatives will therefore be encouraged to undertake health impact assessments. Building on this understanding, efforts will be made to reduce or overcome health inequalities. 2. Support the modernisation of health services The Health Service is a major employer and innovator in the region, but recruitment remains a problem. Initiatives will therefore be supported to help fill skills gaps and vacancies within the health service and to provide key worker housing. Support will also be provided to meet need and standards of care set out by the Department of Health. 3. Reduce crime and the fear of crime Crime and the fear of crime impacts on the healthy life of communities, threatening community cohesion. Best practice in crime reduction will be identified and promoted, focusing on design of the built environment, and engagement of disaffected groups in the economy of local areas. Close collaboration with the police and other criminal justice organisations will be encouraged in order to tackle key crime issues affecting local communities and businesses, including racial harrassment. 4. Support rural community infrastructures Access to key local services is essential for people who live in rural areas. Schools are an integral part of the social fabric of rural communities. The provision of facilities for young people and childcare places will be supported, and support to safeguard existing services and enhanced provision will be encouraged. 5. Harness creative, culture and sports activities to support neighbourhood renewal Arts and sport, cultural and recreational activity can contribute to neighbourhood renewal and a sense of place, and can make a real difference to health, crime, employment and education in deprived areas. Imaginative use of community facilities will be encouraged to offer a range of complimentary activities, widening participation and access will be encouraged and supported

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Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Countryside Agency, businesses, local authorities, Rural Community Councils, other local community and voluntary groups, English Heritage, NHS, Environment Agency, Groundwork, Health Authorities, Southern and South East Arts, South East England Cultural Consortium, local authorities, Sports Council, Police/Crime Reduction Partnerships, Parish and Town Councils.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses enterprise gateways providing services and facilities to promote enterprise; work on supply chains to link areas of economic success and disadvantaged areas Successful People building skills for prosperity ensuring sufficient staff with the skills to support essential community infrastructure.

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The Role of Health and Health Services
Health is a key issue for the region’s economy, both because overall health levels compare unfavourably with many European countries, and because it includes health inequalities which are unacceptably wide (for example a twofold difference in coronary heart disease death rates within the region)26. These inequalities are echoed in many other fields, themselves underlying determinants of health (for example educational attainment, quality of early years care and parenting, teenage conception, smoking, and housing). The modernisation of public services is not just about their responsiveness, and putting the customer centre stage, but also about their role in reducing inequalities. In addition, those areas most in need of targeted investment have in the past received this from many different streams, with different targets and different accountabilities. Co-ordinated investment embracing health and economic development can produce considerable synergy. The Regional Economic Strategy must therefore connect with the sustainable promotion and protection of health and wellbeing, and the reduction of health inequalities. Key issues in relation to the Regional Economic Strategy include:
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The health/prosperity link - Sickness absence reduces economic output, competitiveness, access to skills development and training, and wealth creating potential generally The NHS contribution – both as a health service, and as an agent of regeneration. As a health service, the NHS in the SE is constrained compared with the north of the country by the effect of the national allocation formula, and by capacity, recruitment and retention problems. High vacancy levels, especially in nursing, are in part related to the cost of living and availability of affordable housing. As a regeneration partner, the NHS has a key role in many initiatives designed to address disadvantage and vulnerability.

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However, the NHS is more than simply a provider of health services. It is the UK’s largest single organisation, and its actions have wide ranging economic, social and environmental impacts:
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Employment – the NHS is already the region’s largest employer. Its workforce is set for further substantial growth over the next 10 years. Very significant sums will be spent on education and training (for example a new medical school is starting in Brighton, and the others are all expanding); Purchasing policy - nationally, the NHS spends about £11 billion annually on goods and services. The next few years will see a substantial capital investment programme involving hospitals and primary care, and also new IT systems and applications; Technology – the NHS is a major driver of research and innovation across a wide range of technologies, and is a key market for medical industries; Land and buildings - the NHS is the biggest disposer of brownfield land in the South East, along with the MoD; Infrastructure planning - sustainable investment in health services requires careful co-ordination with other sectors, especially transport and housing.

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It will be important to recognise the NHS as an economic driver, partner and client across the full range of the Regional Economic Strategy.

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For evidence, see Health in the South East Region: its Economic and Social Context and Inequalities and Health in the South East Region, both obtainable via the South East Public Health Observatory website, www.sepho.org.uk

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Effective Infrastructure

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The Issues
Appropriate and high quality infrastructure is essential to our success as a region. Yet the stress under which our current infrastructure is being placed demonstrates more clearly than any other indicator that more of the same is unsustainable for the South East. House prices in the South East are the highest in the country after London. Meanwhile, we are currently building only around half the number of houses required by Regional Planning Guidance. Increased provision of housing, particularly affordable housing, is one of the key challenges facing the region. The lack of decent affordable housing contributes to social exclusion; it impacts on labour supply and economic prosperity; and it generates longer distance commuting, contributing to transport problems. Its effects on the ability of both the public and private sector to recruit and retain staff is evident in the private sector, particularly amongst those at the lower end of the salary scale. Recent research carried out for SEEDA suggests that the problem is particularly acute in the public sector where failure to increase the supply of affordable housing lower paid and key workers could become a threat to public sector services and the overall quality of life of the region. As the Regional Transport Strategy makes clear, the South East has a transport system which is failing to deliver. We must move towards a transport system that supports business securely and reliably. We also need to enable mobility for all in society, recognising that this means much more than simply access to a car. People must be able to work more flexibly, including remote working from locations nearer to home. And we must find a way of achieving these objectives that lessens the real economic, social and environmental damage inflicted by congestion, pollution and development pressures. Two other elements of our infrastructure offer the possibility of assisting us to find solutions to these problems. The development of a broadband communications infrastructure is still in its infancy. Although the evidence to date is inconclusive, Broadband just might provide a spur to new patterns of remote and home working that ease peak time congestion. And if we can unlock our brownfield land assets, we have a potential means enabling the construction of new affordable housing in sustainable urban locations.

Priorities
The objective is that by 2012, the region will have made measurable progress towards infrastructure that matches the standards of the best in North West Europe. There are four priorities supporting this objective:
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Housing – encouraging innovation and good practice within the region and elsewhere to create accommodation which meets the needs of all of our citizens Transport – ensuring the region’s transport network supports the national economy, and securing a sustainable transport network reflecting regional economic priorities Broadband – establishing a communications network to support a high performing knowledge economy Brownfield Land – reclaiming and reusing brownfield land to support sustainable, cohesive communities with quality places for work, living and recreation

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Progress against these objectives will be necessary to underpin progress against all the other objectives of the Regional Economic Strategy.

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PRIORITY 12 The Task

Housing - secure quality affordable housing

There is an acute need to increase the level of housebuilding in the region, and in particular to ensure that the level of affordable housing is maximised. The Regional Housing Statement developed by the Regional Housing Forum partners highlights the lack of affordable housing as an urgent issue facing the region. It is important to build the right type of homes in the right place and there is an urgent need for more affordable housing (defined as subsidised housing for rent and low cost market housing) in rural as well as urban areas. It needs to be recognised that one solution does not fit all, and the mechanisms to activate major expansion in the Thames Gateway, Ashford and Milton Keynes are very different to the issues of providing affordable homes in areas of pressure such as the Thames Valley and Brighton. In addition, new large-scale developments must be carefully planned to avoid recreating the problems of the past. There is also a need to reduce the numbers of homeless households and those in bed and breakfast accommodation through an increase in the provision of social rented housing. Key workers need access to a range of options, including sub-market rented accommodation and low cost home ownership. The definition of key workers needs to be flexible to enable a response to local needs and not be limited to those in crime, health and education. Innovation must be encouraged and good practice from both within the region and elsewhere shared to create accommodation that meets the needs of all of our citizens. Assistance is required at national level, for example through:
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Funding to bring forward major new, mixed use developments in the Thames Gateway, Milton Keynes and Ashford Funding for increased development by regional bodies and Registered Social Landlords to address housing needs across the region Enabling local authorities to retain and recycle their existing housing stock, and recycle receipts directly into new provision where Right to Buy reduces stock

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However, solutions must also be found in the region, marrying the need for new affordable housing with the urban renaissance and brownfield land agendas.

Key Actions
1. Promote the needs of the region, and the provision of affordable housing National, regional and local policy needs to concentrate on funding to enable the delivery of affordable housing. There is simply no alternative if the quantum of affordable housing is to be increased. Within the region, the planning system needs to deliver as much affordable housing as possible, with key workers being an important part of local authority policy and implementation. A more unified and strategic approach to Section 106 agreements is required, to ensure a reasonable response to local market conditions and to ensure that the social gains of development are maximised. It is important that consideration is given to a mix of type and tenure in order to provide choice and progression through the housing ‘ladder’. Action is also needed to promote the social and economic benefits to local communities of adequate affordable housing provision.

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2. Support large scale developments in major growth areas and Millennium Communities Large scale developments will be actively promoted in the areas of major growth in Thames Gateway, Ashford and Milton Keynes, and in the Millennium Communities planned for Milton Keynes and Hastings. 3. Promote and establish mechanisms to bring forward appropriate urban sites for housing, and support the provision of affordable housing in rural areas The re-use of brownfield land will be maximised, and mechanisms will be developed to bring forward appropriate sites for housing, particularly in town centres and priority regeneration areas. Among these initiatives, the Brownfield Land Assembly Trust will identify and bring forward smaller sites not able to be delivered by the market. Support will be provided for rural housing in villages with a population of under 3,000 people, and opportunities will be explored to assist the development of housing in priority rural areas and small rural towns. 4. Support housing investment as part of neighbourhood renewal Regeneration of town centres and priority regeneration areas will be supported, including the promotion of housing renewal in town centres. This will include the re-use use of existing buildings, initiatives to bring under used or empty homes, and flats over shops, back into use for housing. 5. Promote innovation and share best practice Innovation and good practice in delivering affordable housing emerging from within the region and other regions, particularly London, will be identified and disseminated through the activities of the Regional Housing Forum and other partners. Gaps in the skills needed to deliver affordable, good quality housing will be identified and addressed. Employers in both the public and private sectors have a role in assisting their employees, and good practice on the efficient use of housing and land assets, and employer initiatives to assist employees with accommodation, will be promoted.

Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Housing Corporation, Countryside Agency, Rural Community Councils, English Partnerships, local authorities, Parish and Town Councils, Registered Social Landlords, developers.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses promote the role of business in seeking to address the housing needs of employees Successful People maximise participation in prosperity, improve the skills of those engaged in the delivery of affordable housing, promote the career opportunities of the housing sector, particularly in schools Vibrant Communities housing actions will support the process of securing an urban renaissance across the South East, and will be a major end use of reclaimed brownfield land

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PRIORITY 13 The Task

Transport - secure a sustainable transport network

Together with skills and affordable housing, an effective transport system is one of the fundamental requirements for the continuing competitiveness of the region. Despite the potential of ICT and Broadband to allow flexible and home working and leading to much more complex travel patterns for work, leisure and business there is no sign yet of a reduction in the demand for public and private transport. How best to accommodate this demand in a sustainable way to enable efficient movement of people and freight around the region is at the heart of the RES. Much progress has been made since the first RES was prepared in 1999, particularly in defining the region’s transport needs, increasing the level of resources and in the strategic organisation of transport, especially rail. But two key issues stand out for the period covered by this Strategy. Firstly, the overwhelming need now is to concentrate on delivery, and not more studies. The plea from the business community is to accelerate the building of those schemes and projects already on the stocks, not spend further time in research. The first tranche of multi modal studies for the region is now largely complete, identifying a comprehensive range of transport solutions. A rigorous process to follow through the recommendations is needed to hold the responsible agencies to account for progress. Whilst the 10 Year Transport Plan and the Spending Review 2002 provide substantial resources for implementation, as far as the rail system is concerned the SRA Strategic Plan does not generally provide for new schemes identified though the multi modal study process. For this reason, every effort needs to be concentrated on carrying forward the substantial programme of maintenance and basic improvements to the existing road and rail network in the region as a pre-requisite to implementing new schemes. The region’s transport system will be transformed by sustained upgrading and modernisation of the existing infrastructure. This is the principal requirement of the region from Strategic Rail Authority, Network Rail, Highways Agency and local highway authorities over the next few years. Secondly, the region must face up to the challenge of congestion. It is now widely accepted across the business sector as well as environmental interests that the link between economic growth and the growth in road traffic must be weakened. This means recognising that demand management is an integral part of the overall transport policy for the region, alongside the necessary investment in public transport and road schemes. In most of the region’s larger urban areas, dealing with road traffic congestion is an essential element of urban renaissance. The most substantial multi modal study for the region, Orbit, sees the need to move towards area-wide congestion charging as inevitable if the benefits from short term capacity improvements to the M25 are to be sustained. This requires all business, public and voluntary interests to recognise the comprehensive approach, the role that paying for the use of road space in peak periods can make, and the ability to fund continuing improvements to the public transport system from this direct source. Since the first RES was produced in 1999, the Regional Assembly has prepared the Regional Transport Strategy as part of Regional Planning Guidance, for eventual approval by Government. The RTS therefore provides the comprehensive proposals for transport at the regional level, and it is not the role of the RES to duplicate this strategy. The particular requirement of this priority therefore is to identify only those actions that are central to achieving economic development and competitiveness objectives for the region. This means that the treatment of transport in this Strategy is much more selective and targeted than in the first document. These issues lead to four strategic transport actions of particular relevance to the achievement of smart growth. These are not mutually exclusive, but provide a framework for the economic purposes of the RES:

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Establish a regional transport compact Ensure the regional transport system supports national and international priorities Improve cross regional movements Support economic development and regeneration

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Key Actions
1. Regional Transport Compact A regional compact will be developed, embracing all business, public and community interests, setting as a objective a sustainable transport system across the region. The compact will secure specific commitments from all parties to address issues of demand and supply. This will embrace the role of congestion charging within demand management, as well as improvements to the existing network. 2. National and International Transport Links The region plays a particular role as gateway to the country through its ports and airports. This means accepting the substantial passage of people and freight through the region, whilst capitalising upon the economic benefits major transport nodes can offer for sub-regions. It will be important to lobby for the management of existing road freight capacity and for increases in rail freight capacity (although not to the detriment of passenger services).
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The Government will publish a White Paper covering the future development of air transport early in the life of this RES. Before then, difficult decisions will be needed about the future role of the existing major airports within and just outside the region, ie Gatwick and Heathrow. Planned terminal growth at both airports will cater for the next few years, but beyond that the region will need to consider whether future demand should be met entirely, and the particular contribution that Hub airports make to airport development. There are also issues relating to Thames Gateway and how best to capitalise on the economic development potential offered by airport growth to the area. The region needs to balance the economic advantages of airport development with the environmental disadvantages, and in any event ensure that surface access is properly provided. The Channel Tunnel Rail Link will be fully open from London to the Channel Tunnel in 2007. Domestic use of the CTRL is a vital aspect for the region given that the CTRL has a mix of regeneration and economic development advantages for Thames Gateway and East Kent, as well as the headline time saving and service improvements between London, Paris and Brussels. The region’s major ports require continuing access improvements, for example the A2 close to Dover and the potential improvements to the Southampton to West Midlands rail route to serve Southampton. Further work is required to explore the potential for transferring port traffic from road to rail.

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3. Cross Regional Transport A distinctive characteristic of the region is the complexity of passenger and freight movements around London as well as through it. The multi modal studies have demonstrated this very clearly, and a number of substantial transport projects arising from them will assist in improving movement within the region.
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Several locations in the region act as major transport interchanges. Airtrack would reinforce the continued success of Heathrow and improve connections to the western part of the region. A substantial capacity upgrade of Reading station is also needed to improve services and the connections to the western part of the region. At Ashford and Ebbsfleet, the opportunities arise from the

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Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) to develop further the interchange between existing and new rail links, to the benefit of Ashford and Thames Gateway as major growth points. At Milton Keynes, development of the East West Rail proposals will similarly encourage the development opportunities that the location already offers at the heart of the Oxford to Cambridge arc.
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Crossrail offers the opportunity to link Reading and Heathrow with the Thames Gateway, especially via Docklands to Ebbsfleet. Full and early implementation will be pursued. Full support to the development of Thameslink 2000 providing cross London links between Milton Keynes/Bedford and Gatwick /Brighton, for example.

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4. Economic Development and Regeneration Many current transport projects are put forward to support regeneration and economic development objectives across the region as a whole. Those of regional significance are:
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CTRL will radically transform the prospects of Thames Gateway based on the new international station at Ebbsfleet and especially the ability to provide domestic rail services to the Medway Towns. In addition, substantial infrastructure is needed to implement Thames Gateway proposals, including additional crossings of the Thames and public transport schemes such as Fastrack. The regeneration priority areas of the south coast have been examined comprehensively as part of the South Coast Multi-Modal Study. This recommends a balanced package of transport solutions to improve access between the south coast towns and radially to London, and these should be pursued with utmost urgency. North East Kent requires the full implementation of road access proposals for the A256 and A299, in support of major economic development needs of this sub region. The major bottlenecks on roads and especially several motorway and trunk road junctions identified in the previous RES remain to be implemented. These include the A3 at Hindhead, junction 4 of the M20 in Kent, junction 4 of the M40 in Buckinghamshire, together with junctions 11 and 13 on the M4. To these need to be added the longstanding difficulties on Junction 10 of the M20, without which substantial growth at Ashford cannot be realised. The A34 north from Southampton is continuing to develop as a major arterial route of European importance and proposals to handle this growth will be considered in the Multi Modal Study, which is eagerly awaited. Rural transport is a continuing requirement across the region along with a particular focus on ensuring access to the market towns, as the centres of rural services.

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Key Partners
SEEDA, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, Highways Agency, Environment Agency, SRA, Network Rail, Countryside Agency, Transport 2000, SusTrans, Train Operating Companies, bus operators, road haulage operators.

Links to Other Objectives
Underpins all aspects of Competitive Businesses Successful People Vibrant Communities

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PRIORITY 14 The Task

Broadband - maximise access to and take up of Broadband facilities

The take up of Broadband services and the application of the latest technologies is critical for the sustainable growth and competitiveness of the South East. Take up of Broadband in the UK (until recently less than 1%) lags well behind that in many major competitors including the US, Canada and Sweden. The Government’s target to achieve the highest broadband penetration within the G7 group of countries by 2005 requires the implementation of a substantial and ambitious programme. Infrastructure costs and the resulting delivery charges are the principal barriers to broadband uptake. These factors can be addressed by demand stimulation and bulk buying at community, sub regional and regional levels. Appreciation of the benefits, availability and take up of Broadband is variable throughout the region. SEEDA, local authorities and business organisations working with Government (DTI and DfES) have a key role to play in managing the stimulation of Broadband uptake and co-ordination between the many users through the promotion of best practice. Take up by individuals and creating open access points in the local community will be important, opening up possibilities of remote working, learning within the home and easier access to information. The role of schools and the demand for broadband within the home generated by young people will be an important lever in changing behaviour. Content creation for Broadband will drive up demand, and this will involve collaboration with a wide range of commercial and public sector partners. Demand stimulation will need to go hand in hand with improvements in broadband infrastructure and availability across the South East. In more heavily populated areas, where infrastructure provision is commercially viable, the situation is satisfactory but less populated locations, particularly rural areas and the area east of the M23, have poor provision. Of particular concern are the region’s areas of deprivation including the Sussex and Kent coastal areas and the Isle of Wight. In these deprived areas Broadband enablement could have a significant impact on regeneration and social inclusion. Businesses have a key role to play in facilitating broadband penetration in the South East through focused working of membership organisations and sector groups, for example the media and creative sector, particularly in relation to content provision and promoting best practice. Broadband networks can make a significant contribution to the Sustainable use of natural resources by supporting teleworking in rural communities and reducing some of the growing pressure on transport links. They should be seen as an essential part of the region’s infrastructure alongside transport links.

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Key Actions
1. Stimulate demand for Broadband The benefits of Broadband will be promoted to businesses, public sector bodies, the voluntary sector and individuals through existing business support services and employer networks. Particular emphasis will be placed on spreading good practice through relevant case studies and through showcasing achievements of other Broadband enabled businesses. Broadband use will be stimulated in schools to make children, their parents and local communities aware of its uses and benefits. 2. Promote the development of ‘remote office’ facilities The universal availability of Broadband at or near to home offers the prospect of genuinely flexible working. ‘Broadplaces’ will be piloted across the region to explore the potential for mobile and remote working. Pilots will be located in urban and rural areas, situated near to public transport hubs, and making use of existing business or community facilities where appropriate. 3. Promote and develop regional and local portals These will be developed to provide relevant information, best practice, high quality web enabled and interactive services to local businesses and communities and individuals. 4. Develop region’s Broadband infrastructure Collaboration between public sector partners and central government will be essential to aggregate demand, in order to stimulate to stimulate new infrastructure provision, lower prices and effective regulation. Optimal solutions for rural areas will be explored, including support for rural teleworkers and local solutions in remote areas. The provision of ducts for fibres or cables will be encouraged whenever roads or utility services (e.g. sewage systems) are built or repaired. Use of existing infrastructure, such as waterway systems, will be explored. Building codes will be developed in collaboration with local authorities to ensure the provision of broadband capability in all new commercial and residential developments.

Key Partners
DTI, DfES, Broadband Stakeholders Group, businesses (including BT and telecommunication companies), local authorities, NHS and other key public sector bodies, business support organisations and employer representative bodies, UKERNA (SuperJanet) and Universities, Local Learning and Skills Councils, Schools and Colleges, e-publishing companies, sector groups, economic partnerships, sub-regional cluster initiatives.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses accelerate business start-ups and enable businesses to adapt and change Successful People skills for prosperity, stimulate learning, and develop smarter health services, community groups and local government Vibrant Communities increase employment in excluded rural groups and release potential of deprived communities, and play a significant role in urban renaissance. Effective Infrastructure reduce dependence on road network, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions through reduction of car travel. Develop smart public transport information systems (for example satellite tracking) linked direct to the home and waypoints.

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PRIORITY 15 The Task

Brownfield Land - reclaim and reuse brownfield land to support sustainable, cohesive communites

It is critical for the continued growth of the region that a more sustainable pattern of development is achieved and that optimum use is made of the regions existing urban assets. In parts of the region such as the Thames Valley, the overall strength of the property market has provided a strong catalyst for the re-development, intensification and upgrading of brownfield sites. By contrast, the region’s priority regeneration areas contain a significant number of sites with potential for redevelopment, but with complex physical regeneration issues making the private sector unwilling to step in unaided. The South East is a region of intense housing pressure, yet the housing stock is of a lower density than any other region. The Government has set a national target for 60% of new housing to be built on brownfield land or be provided by conversion of existing buildings. The majority of provision will be within the existing urban fabric, and is likely to arise on smaller sites. Bringing space back into use (for example above shops or through the restoration and conversion of historic buildings or finding new uses for redundant buildings) and identifying and making optimum use of small sites, can help to meet both housing demand and Government targets. A focus on the significant environmental impacts of buildings, both in construction and operation, has generated important advances in sustainable construction – for example, in sourcing and use of sustainable materials, improved construction methods, greater efficiency in energy and water use, the use of renewable energy technology. Building development can have significant impacts on biodiversity. It also offers opportunities to enhance biodiversity, and SEEDA, with a number of key partners, is funding a 2-year project ‘Building for Nature’, which will demonstrate what can be achieved in this regard, and promote best practice across the region.

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Key Actions
1. Secure the re-use of brownfield land, and make the most of brownfield assets The South East will contribute to the national brownfield land remediation target of 1,300 ha per annum by securing from 2002 onwards a minimum annual total of 75ha of derelict land and buildings reclaimed annually for employment, housing, community and environmental purposes. The main areas for attention will be the priority regeneration areas of the Kent and Sussex coasts, Southern Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and the former East Kent Coalfield. Initiatives such as urban capacity studies will be used to identify vacant, poorly used and under-used land suitable for development. Progress will be made towards the target of 60% of new housing development taking place on brownfield sites by identifying, assembling and facilitating the development of small and fragmented areas of land for development in urban and rural areas. 2. Secure best value from public sector land holdings Statutory bodies, such as the NHS, Local Authorities and Government Departments, will be encouraged to contribute to regeneration by making best use of their land assets. Working through partnership, initiatives will be taken to overcome constraints to the development of land surplus to public agency requirements. 3. Secure sustainable construction Relevant public bodies will work with the property industry to invest in research and development by supporting the dissemination of best practice in the region. Practical initiatives will encourage development that conforms to BREEAM standards and incorporate a design, technology and sustainable construction approach in refurbishment and rehabilitation/redevelopment schemes, as well as in new-build developments.

Key Partners
SEEDA, South East England Regional Assembly, Local Authorities, Health Authorities, Ministry of Defence, English Partnerships, English Heritage, Registered Social Landlords, English Heritage, Housing Corporation, Environment Agency, Groundwork, developers, sector groups.

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses providing a range of accommodation to meet business demand Successful People ensuring that the construction sector has a skilled workforce able to meet the regeneration and development needs of the region Vibrant Communities delivering sustainable development consistent with the principles of an urban and rural renaissance and ensuring effective community engagement in the process of change

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Sustainable Use of Natural Resources

Sustainable Development

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The Issues
The environmental economy of South East England is an asset of immense importance to the region. In 2000, the environmental economy contributed nearly £8 billion to the South East economy, and employed approximately 230,000 people (a higher figure in both cases than for any other English region). It comprises:
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Primary industries that depend on environmental resources, such as agriculture, forestry, fishing and mineral extraction Industries that depend on a high quality environment for their success, such as tourism, recreation and leisure Activities that contribute to a high quality environment, such as conservation organisations, local authorities and government agencies Organisations and businesses involved in developing technologies that deliver an improved environment. environmental

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Ensuring that economic activity is not accompanied by environmental degradation is a fundamental prerequisite for achieving smart growth in the South East. It would be mistaken to view the environment simply as a constraint on growth, or as something in need of protection from the consequences of growth. Instead, we must recognise that investment in our environmental assets (natural, landscape and historic) is part and parcel of the infrastructure on which prosperity depends, including:
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Provision of green space to support urban regeneration Creation of wetland to provide flood alleviation Reinforcement of character to support the sense of place Landscape enhancement to promote tourism Woodland management to provide a renewable energy resource

Understanding and adapting to the realities of climate change form a backdrop for much of the work in this field. The latest climate change scenarios for the UK show that climate change is expected to be more pronounced in the South East than in any other UK region. For example over the next 20 years we may expect:
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Increases in average annual temperature of 0.5 – 1.5 degrees Celsius Increases in summer temperatures of 1 – 1.5 degrees Celsius Reductions in summer rainfall by 10 – 20% Increases in winter rainfall by up to 10%

These and other changes could impact on a wide range of economic activity, bringing both challenges and opportunities. They pose particular challenges for coastal management policies, through forecast rises in sea levels and increased incidence of tidal surges. We need both to plan for adaptation, and to consider our own contribution to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The costs of our inefficient use of resources – energy losses and ever-increasing amounts of waste, for example – are becoming more significant, and legislative and fiscal drivers are reinforcing the growing need to reassess our attitude towards resource use. It is clear that an unsustainable approach towards resource use will ultimately generate barriers to appropriate, sustained economic growth. A sustainable approach to managing and using these resources must anticipate these barriers, and take steps to avoid or remove them. This will in turn give rise to new business opportunities.

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Priorities
The objective is that by 2012 the South East will be one of the world’s leading environmental economies, with businesses in the region having made significant reductions in water and energy consumption and waste production, relative to the level of their output. There are three priorities supporting this objective:
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Invest in the environment – to maximise its contribution to a sustainable economy Secure sustainable land management – to provide the basis for a more prosperous future for the land-based sector Achieve sustainable management of water, waste and energy – to break the link between economic growth and environmental degradation

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Links to Other Objectives
Progress against this objective will underpin progress against all other objectives

South East Sustainable Business Partnership
The six Sustainable Business Partnerships in the South East now work together as a regional network, and play a key role in delivering practical help to businesses wishing to improve their sustainability performance. The Partnerships engaged with 11,000 businesses in 2001, helping them both to achieve savings through improved energy efficiency, waste minimisation and utilities management, and to reduce negative environmental impacts. The first South East Sustainable Business Awards were held in 2001, and will now continue on an annual basis.

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PRIORITY 16

Environmental Capital - invest in environment capital to maximise its contribution to a sustainable regional economy

The Task
The environment is a capital resource that underpins much economic activity in the region. It is also one of the prime reasons for the high quality of life that people in the region value so highly. The environment supports the primary industries such as agriculture, forestry and mineral extraction, and is largely shaped and maintained by those industries. The quality of the environment is a significant driver for tourism, which is a major contributor to the regional economy and is predicted to continue to grow. Areas with a high environmental quality can also help to attract new businesses. Investment to improve poorer areas can create the conditions where economic activity has a better chance of success. While the environment is already a major contributor to the regional economy and quality of life in general, the activities it generates do not constitute a discrete economic sector, and its asset value and further potential are therefore not widely recognised by regional partners. As a result the environmental resource does not always receive the investment, support and promotion that it warrants in economic terms, and opportunities to tap its full potential have yet to be realised. The key actions for the region should address these issues in order to maximise the value of the natural environment to the region.

Key Actions
1. Promote awareness and understanding of the environment as a key strength of the South East economy The current and potential contribution of the environment to the economy is not widely understood and there is a need to ensure it is embraced within regional and local strategies. Further research will extend knowledge of the opportunities for specific areas and activities, which will be disseminated together with examples of best practice 2. Maintain the value of the environment as an economic asset Activities such as agriculture, forestry and fishing, tourism and mineral extraction all use the environment as a resource. Initiatives that sustain these business activities by rewarding sensitive and sustainable management of the asset will be encouraged. Regional and local policy frameworks will be used to supplement statutory regulation and establish benchmark standards. 3. Secure investment in enhancing and restoring biodiversity, to generate better economic, environmental and social returns in the future Joint initiatives for land remediation, habitat creation and enhancement will be implemented across the region, particularly where opportunities exist for environmentled economic and social regeneration. Potential schemes have already been identified within the Thames Gateway, on the Isle of Wight, in East Kent and around Portsmouth. Further scope for landscape-scale initiatives will be identified through a strategic review. Enhancement of biodiversity in the built environment will be pursued. 4. Promote and support sustainable tourism based on the quality of the natural, built and historic environment A comprehensive approach to promoting the different aspects of heritage and the environment is needed to add value to the package of sustainable tourism on offer in the region. Environmentally sensitive farming and local produce must be fully integrated into sub-regional initiatives of this nature. Regional and local strategies should encourage sustainable tourism, and flagship schemes such as the potential initiatives in East Kent should be developed as best practice examples

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Key Partners
SEEDA, South East England Regional Assembly, Government Office for the South East, local authorities, Environment Agency, English Nature, English Heritage, Groundwork, land-based businesses and organisations, statutory and voluntary environmental bodies, tourism bodies, local authorities, Parish and Town Councils, Forum for the Future.

Links to Other Objectives
Underpins all other objectives

Environmental Technologies and Services
Environmental technologies and services represent a major growth area for South East businesses. The DTI’s Joint Environmental Markets Unit already lists 530 environmental technologies firms in the region, and SEEDA believes this to be an underestimate of the true number. A range of initiatives are already under way to support the further development of this sector across the region:
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SEEDA has launched an Environmental Technology Sector Group, which brings together key companies in the sector, to identify and respond to opportunities and challenges they face in developing the sector and improving their competitiveness. Sector mapping is well advanced, and the Group is adopting an early focus on renewable energy The Environmental Technologies Enterprise Hub, based at Reading University, provides a focus for addressing the needs of high growth businesses in this sector across the region.

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PRIORITY 17 The Task

Sustainable Land Management - secure greater prosperity for the land-based sector through sustainable land management

Maintenance of the countryside of the South East, one of the region’s major assets, is integral to the region’s competitiveness. Although relatively small in economic terms, it is the landbased sector that maintains the region’s important landscape assets. Nearly a third of these landscapes are recognised as having ‘national quality’, attracting people, businesses and visitors and bringing significant income into the region. Landscape management by the land-based sector is therefore critical. The land-based sector is undergoing radical restructuring, and must make the most of new opportunities for diversification – both within agriculture through new industrial crops and alternative energy crops and outside agriculture using the potential for re-use of redundant buildings. All agencies must seek to co-ordinate initiatives and investment priorities. Economic development must be seen as a means of maintaining and enhancing the region’s natural and historic assets. This can only be achieved if measures to tackle economic, social and environmental issues are integrated, both in design and delivery. This includes working with the land use planning system to deliver a living countryside in which economic development can enhance the environment and maintain thriving communities.

Key Actions
1. Support sustainable agriculture Farming and horticultural industries will be supported to maintain a viable and vibrant sector that continues to both manage the landscape and produce food. 2. Support farmers to diversify and achieve higher added value Farmers will be supported to enable them to make best use of their redundant buildings and secure additional income. The further development of farm-based tourism will be supported as part of a broader diversification strategy. Support will be given to the development of farmer co-operatives and local producer-networks, building on existing body good practice across the region. 3. Encourage the production of industrial and renewable energy crops This will embrace measures to both improve the exploitation of existing resources such as coppice woodland, and research and development involving new high value energy crops for energy and bio-fuels. 4. Support woodland management and quality landscapes A strategy for the region’s woodlands will be developed to guide support for both woodland management and woodland regeneration. Mechanisms will be developed to support quality landscapes, the region’s living heritage, and particularly the Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the emerging National Parks, to ensure that they continue to make a significant contribution to the region’s quality of life.

Key Partners
SEEDA, South East England Regional Assembly, Countryside Agency, English Nature, Environment Agency, Food Standards Agency, DEFRA, National Farmers Union, Country Landowners and Business Association, Farming Wildlife Advisory Group, voluntary sector, local rural partnerships

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses enabling businesses to adapt to change through innovation

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PRIORITY 18 The Task

Water, Waste and Energy - achieve sustainable management of water, waste and energy

While water supply and demand are currently broadly in overall balance at regional level, this masks significant imbalances in some parts of the region. Water supply and sewerage are not always given sufficient importance in development proposals; however they have an increasingly significant bearing on the type and location of development. There are also issues of actual or potential over-exploitation of water resources. It is estimated that the provision of any new water sources (for example raising reservoir levels) will have a lead time of 10 years – and will inevitably have an environmental impact. Waste is a growing issue, particularly in terms of current levels of waste generation and approaches to waste management and disposal. The Regional Assembly is preparing a regional Waste Strategy that will identify and seek to address key problems, within the context of the national Waste Strategy, which includes targets for waste recycling levels. Efforts are already underway to address some of the barriers to higher levels of recycling through helping to develop markets for the recycled material. Greater awareness of the economic potential of discarded material, which can be realised through programmes of re-use and recycling, will open up new business opportunities while reducing the need for ‘final’ disposal. The use of energy derived from fossil fuels is the major contributor to global warming and, hence, to climate change. Both the EU and the UK Government have set targets for the proportion of electricity generated from renewable sources by 2010 (EU-wide target: 20%; UK target 10%). The Regional Assembly is preparing a strategy for energy efficiency and renewable energy that will identify actions to contribute towards these targets. There is no doubt that the requirement for less-polluting sources of energy will grow. Renewable energy has been identified as the most significant growth sector within the UK Environmental Technology sector, with forecast growth rates of 15% per annum to 2010. These developments are providing an important stimulus to innovation, and will represent significant opportunities for new business opportunities and business growth in the region.

Key Actions
1. Support the sustainable management of water resources including water saving The work of the South East Water Resources Forum will be supported, and initiatives will be taken to embed a wider understanding and greater awareness of water resource issues in the region. Research will be undertaken to identify the economic benefits of improved management of water resources, for example in river catchments, and of increasing wetland for flood alleviation. Action will be supported to encourage individual businesses and other employers (particularly major public sector employers such as local authorities and health services) to achieve best practice in water management. 2. Promote and demonstrate the economic value of ‘waste’ as a resource Practical initiatives will be supported to assist waste market development and contribute to higher levels of re-use and recycling. Organisations across all sectors will be encouraged to recognise opportunities for waste minimisation, re-use and recycling and to promote best practice, saving costs and improving their competitiveness.

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3. Support improved energy efficiency and an increase in the proportion of energy derived from renewable sources The Regional Assembly will be supported in its co-ordination of the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Strategy. Best practice in energy efficiency will be identified and promoted across the region. The Environmental Technology Sector Group will include a focus on addressing barriers to the development of the renewable energy technology sector in the region, and on engaging existing energy providers in exploring the potential of new energy technologies. Practical steps will be taken to encourage and promote market development in renewable energy in the region.

Key Partners
South East Water Resources Forum, Waste Research Action Programme (WRAP), Environment Agency, Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, South East Sustainable Business Partnership, English Nature, local authorities, renewable energy networks, businesses, universities (especially centres of excellence)

Links to Other Objectives
Competitive Businesses enabling businesses to adapt to change through innovation

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

PART THREE

77

Measuring Progress

Competitive Businesses

Successful People

Sustainable Development Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Effective Infrastructure Vibrant Communities

MEASURING PROGRESS

78

Introduction
This Regional Economic Strategy is built on a solid base of analytical evidence, which is presented in the accompanying Economic Profile. The evidence has been assembled by SEEDA and other regional partners, working through collaborative arrangements such as:
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The South East England Intelligence Network (SEE-IN)– comprising the Government Office for the South East, South East England Regional Assembly, SEEDA, the Environment Agency (Southern and Thames Regions) and the South East Public Health Observatory Skills Insight – the regional skills research unit funded and guided by SEEDA, the six Local Learning and Skills Councils, the Government Office for the South East, Jobcentre Plus, Sector Skills Councils, Higher Education South East, the Association of South East Colleges, the Small Business Service, RAISE and the South East England Regional Assembly

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This evidence base also provides the framework for assessing progress against the Regional Economic Strategy. The following tables identify a basket of indicators for each of the five objectives of the Regional Economic Strategy. These indicators will be used to measure progress against the objectives, and will form the basis of an annual report to the region on progress in implementing the Regional Economic Strategy. The indicators have been selected to provide a means of making a rounded assessment of progress against each objective. They have been prepared within the context of the Regional Sustainable Development Framework (produced by the Regional Assembly, the Government Office for the South East, the Environment Agency, the National Health Service and SEEDA) and the Regional Outcome Targets (agreed by SEEDA with regional partners and Government). While the indicators selected here focus on those aspects of the Framework where the Regional Economic Strategy is expected to have direct impact, the Strategy will be expected to contribute to the full range of objectives and indicators identified in the Regional Sustainable Development Framework. The schematic relationship between the three sets of indicators is shown overleaf. During the period of this Strategy, SEEDA’s Corporate Plans will set out the framework of intermediate indicators by which it will measure the contribution of its own activities to these objectives. SEEDA will continue to work through existing regional arrangements for collaboration on research and analysis, and will continue to promote the South East England Intelligence Network and Skills Insight as research resources for the region.

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Regional Economic Strategy Indicators

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

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Objective

Indicator

Baseline

Target by 2012

Source / Means of Verification EBS, 200127 ONS forthcoming28 Global Regions29, 2001

Average annual increase in GVA per head at constant prices Among top 15 Maintain or improve position

3.1% (1991-2001)

3.2% average

MEASURING PROGRESS

Competitive Businesses A dynamic, diverse and knowledge-based economy that excels in innovation and turning ideas into wealth creating enterprise. By 2012, the South East England will be one of the world’s 15 most innovative and entrepreneurial regions £3,500 New measure, under development 31.9% gap 16% (gap halved) Increase Increase ONS, 2000 GEM30, 2002

Position of the South East against other high performing regions in terms of Knowledge Economy composite indicator

Value of manufactured exports per head

Framework of Indicators Objectives, Indicators and Targets

Entrepreneurial activity compared with best in Europe / US

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Objectives To sustain economic growth and competitiveness, and ensure a better distribution of economic activity across the region

Gap between the 119 most deprived wards and the rest of the region in terms of VAT registered companies per 1000 population

Nomis31/IMD32 2000

To invest to secure our future prosperity and quality of life

To develop the knowledge economy by focusing on higher value, lower impact activities

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Indicators GDP / GVA per capita; Business start ups and survival rates; Social, R&D and total investment; Knowledge economy

Relevant Regional Outcome Targets Sustainable Economic Performance; Rural; Productivity; Enterprise; Investment; Innovation

27

28

29

30

31

32

Experion Business Strategies Office of National Statistics Global Regions Report, SEEDA Global Entrepreneurship Monitor National Online Manpower Intelligence Service Index of Multiple Deprivation

Objective

Indicator

Baseline

Target by 2012

Source / Means of Verification Global Regions, 2001

Position of the South East against other high performing regions in terms of labour productivity Among top 20 Not known Increase by at least 2% per annum Maintain or Increase Labour Force Survey, 1999 Nomis/IMD 2000 QoLC33 DETR 1999

35th out of 40

MEASURING PROGRESS

Successful People A skilled, motivated, inclusive and highly productive workforce that anticipates and embraces change. By 2012, the South East will be one of the top 15 regions in the world in terms of labour productivity and employment rates. 74.9

Annual increase in GVA per worker (for whole economy and manufacturing)

Proportion of working age people in work

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Objectives To ensure high and stable levels of employment so everyone can benefit from the economic growth of the region 1.37% higher 0.7% (gap halved) Level 3 = 48% Level 4= 28% Increase

Close the unemployment gap between the 119 most deprived wards and the rest of the region

To develop the knowledge economy by focusing on higher value, lower impact activities

% of population NVQ Level 3 and 4

Regional Trends, ONS, 2001

To raise educational and achievement levels across the region and develop opportunities for everyone to acquire the skills needed to find and remain in work

Relevant Sustainable Development Indicators Labour productivity; Working age people in work; Adults with NVQ3 and above; Adults with basic numeracy and literacy skills; Retention of young people in education beyond minimum leaving age

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

Relevant Regional Outcome Targets Sustainable Economic Performance; Regeneration; Rural; Employment; Skills; Productivity

33

Quality of Life Counts

81

82

Objective

Indicator

Baseline

Target by 2012

Source / Means of Verification IMD 2000

Number of unemployed adults (claimant count) in the 119 most deprived wards 18,315 13,700 67,805 50,800 IMD 2000

MEASURING PROGRESS

Number of adults living in income support households in the 119 most deprived wards 131 wards falling amongst the worst 20% nationally (By 2010): • 40% reduction • 40% reduction • 20% reduction • 20% reduction Reduce 1,667 563 954 Reduce the income gap in these 131 wards IMD 2000

Vibrant Communities An inclusive society characterised by strong, diverse and healthy communities enjoying ready access to high quality jobs, education, homes, services and environment and free from high levels of crime and discrimination. By 2012, the gap between the most deprived parts of the region and the rest will have narrowed by at least 10%. Compendium of Clinical and Health Indicators 1995-97

Income gap between the 119 most deprived wards and the rest of the region

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Objectives To improve the health and well-being of the population and reduce inequalities in health • 32.58 • 10.54 • 128.6 • 15.2

Age standardised death rates per 10,000 population from34: • Coronary heart disease (under 65) • Strokes (under 65) • Cancer (under 75) • Accidents (all ages)

To reduce poverty and social exclusion and close the gap between the most disadvantaged communities and the rest

To stimulate economic revival in priority regeneration areas

Crime rates per 100,000 population: • Theft • Burglary • Violent crime

Home Office, 2001

To reduce crime and the fear of crime

To create and sustain vibrant communities

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Indicators Death rate from coronary heart disease, stokes, cancer and accidents; Children living in low income families; Working age population in workless households; Fuel poverty; Level of crime; Fear of crime; Population with access to key local services and facilities; Participation in cultural, sporting and arts activities

To encourage the development of, and participation in, culture, sports and the arts

Relevant Regional Outcome Targets Sustainable Economic Performance; Regeneration; Urban; Rural; Enterprise; Investment

34

SEEDA will seek to develop with partners, indicators which focus on health inequalities within the region

Objective

Indicator

Baseline

Target by 2012

Source / Means of Verification DTLR, 2001 New measure

Homelessness per 10,000 population Not yet established Increase

18.1

9

Proportion of affordable homes within total housing stock Not yet established Increase New measure

MEASURING PROGRESS

Effective Infrastructure Transport, communications and housing infrastructures that support and enable continued economic growth and improved quality of life for all. By 2012, the region will have made measurable progress towards the having infrastructures that match the standards of the best in North West Europe. 56% Achieve at least 60% by 2008, and increase further by 2012. Reduce ONS, 2001

Proportion of businesses and households using Broadband facilities

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Objectives To ensure that everyone has the opportunity of a decent and affordable home 24 mins

Proportion of development on Brownfield land increased

Mean time taken travelling

To reduce road traffic and congestion through reducing the need to travel by car and improving travel choice

Labour Force Survey, ONS 2001

To improve efficiency in land use through the re-use of previously developed land and existing buildings, and encourage urban renaissance

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Indicators Homelessness and housing need; Affordable homes within total housing stock; homes judged unfit / non-decent to live in; Growth in road traffic; traffic congestion; Proportion of travel by car; Investment in public transport, walking and cycling; Development on previously developed land; Derelict land and empty houses.

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

Relevant Regional Outcome Targets Sustainable Economic Performance; Physical Development

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Objective

Indicator

Baseline

Target by 2012

Source / Means of Verification QoLC, DETR ESTU / AEA Technology, 2000 QoLC, DETR QoLC, DETR

Per capita carbon dioxide emissions 73MW 750MW by 2010 1150MW by 2015 Reduce Reduce

2.05 tonnes

Reduce

Amount of total energy produced from renewable sources 165.2 litres per day 85% Household 51% Industrial and Commercial Not yet established Reduce

MEASURING PROGRESS

Per capita water consumption

Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Environmentally efficient businesses and high quality development demonstrating that quality of the environment is a key asset that underpins economic success. By 2012 the South East will be one of the world’s leading environmental economies, with businesses in the region having made significant gains in safeguarding and enhancing this asset.

% of waste generated going to landfill

The Regional Economic Strategy for South East England

Energy use per capita

New measure

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Objectives To reduce air pollution and ensure air quality continues to improve To maintain and improve the water quality of the region’s rivers and coast To address the causes of climate change through reducing emissions and greenhouse gases To conserve and enhance the region’s biodiversity To protect, enhance and encourage employment in the countryside To maintain, enhance and make accessible the historic environment and assets of the region To achieve sustainable water resources management To reduce waste generation and disposal, and achieve sustainable management of waste To increase energy efficiency To increase the proportion of energy generated and consumed in the region from renewable resources

Relevant Sustainable Development Framework Indicators Days when air pollution is moderate or high; Rivers with good or fair water quality; Compliance with EC Bathing Waters Directive; Emissions of greenhouse gases; Populations of wild birds; Condition of Sites of Special Scientific Interest; Extent and condition of key habitats; Land covered by management schemes; Access to and use of the countryside; Bjuildings of Grade I and II* at risk of decay; Per capita consumption of water; Properties at risk of flooding; Waste generation and method of management; Energy use per capita; Installed capacity for energy production from renewable resources.

Relevant Regional Outcome Targets Sustainable Economic Performance

South East England Development Agency Key Offices: SEEDA Headquarters Cross Lanes, Guildford, Surrey, GU1 1YA, England Tel: +44 (0)1483 484 200 Fax: +44 (0)1483 484 247 Email: info@seeda.co.uk Web: www.seeda.co.uk Chatham Maritime Office The Observatory, Brunel, Chatham Maritime, Kent, ME4 4NT, England Tel: +44 (0)1634 899 900 Fax: +44 (0)1634 899 901 SEEDA is also represented with its partners in Brussels Brussels Office South East England House, 35 Square de Meeus, 1000 Brussels, Belgium Tel: 00 322 504 0720 Fax: 00 322 504 0722

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