City, Devolution and Growth Deal Gateway Reviews

SQW led the National Evaluation Panel which evaluated the progress and impact of long-term devolved Investment Funds in ten local areas[i] across the UK over 2016-2020. The Investment Funds (sometimes known locally as ‘gainshare’) allow local areas a high degree of flexibility to invest in local economic growth priorities, including supporting land and property schemes, new and improved transport infrastructure, and business and skills development.

Each Investment Fund is subject to a five yearly Gateway Review by Government. As the National Evaluation Panel lead, SQW was responsible for designing and delivering evaluations across all ten local areas. A wide range of evaluation techniques were required to reflect the variety of investments made by local areas. The evaluations provided evidence to inform the first Gateway Review process and the subsequent Government decision on investment for the next five-year funding period.

In 2022, an SQW led consortium[ii] was commissioned by DLUHC to support the second Gateway Reviews for the same ten local areas, and Gateway Reviews for a further three areas[iii]. In our new role, we will support all 13 local areas in the design of their evaluation research, oversee and guide its implementation in each area, and then review and synthesise the evidence generated in a report to inform the Gateway Review.

If you would like to know more about the evaluation of devolved Investment Funds, or our wider work in evaluation and local economic development, please contact Graham Thom.

[i] Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Cardiff Capital Region, Glasgow City Region, Greater Cambridge, Greater Manchester, Leeds City Region, Liverpool City Region, Tees Valley, West Midlands and West of England

[ii] The consortium includes the Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (University College London), Cambridge Econometrics, Centre for Transport and Society (University of the West of England), Colin Warnock Associates, Eftec, Residential Analysts, and Savills.

There is also a six member Academic Panel: Professor Martin Boddy (University of the West of England); Professor Iain Doherty (University of Stirling); Professor Ron Martin and Professor Peter Tyler (both University of Cambridge); and Professor Philip McCann and Professor Cecilia Wong (both University of Manchester).

[iii] North of Tyne, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire