Levelling Up Government?

by Prof. Colin Talbot and Dr. Carole Talbot

Screenshot 2020-02-28 at 14.05.40
The current government has committed itself to “levelling up” – as opposed to policy of “levelling out” – the UK. This means bringing the so-called “left behind” regions, cities and towns up to the levels of the highest, which is mainly London. The government’s focus is clearly on place rather than people.

So, taking the government at its word, we want to focus on those things that government itself can do to help with ‘levelling up’ of its own operations across the UK. The main areas we want to investigate, and monitor, are:

  • Public spending – how far is it fairly spread across the UK according to need? How might the systems of distribution be reformed and de-politicised?
  • Government structures – do the UKs multi-level governance structures (devolved governments, local government, and other local services) help or hinder levelling up? Can real authority be ‘levelled up’ by further redistribution of governance?
  • Civil Service – could it be more geographically dispersed and if so how?

We’ve are publishing a series of articles on these issues:

Levelling Up Government: The History of Dispersing the Civil Service?
Colin Talbot & Carole Talbot [coming June 2020]

The Rise and Fall of Government Offices for the Regions
Carole Talbot [coming April 2020]

The Challenge of “Levelling Up” Decision Making?
will a Treasury campus in the North East really help?
David Higham [coming Mar 2020]

Can Civil Service decentralisation to stimulate regional growth in the UK? Ten years after the Smith Review
Ian Smith Radix. March 2020

‘Levelling Up’ Public Spending – The Magic Formula?
Colin Talbot and Carole Talbot. [Coming: The Policy Institute, King’s College London. 9 Mar 2020 ]

Levelling up the left behind is not as easy as it sounds
Colin Talbot and Carole Talbot, The Policy Institute, King’s College London. Feb 2020

On the level: What does the government mean by levelling up?
Colin Talbot and Carole Talbot, Civil Service World. Feb 2020

Going local: could tax and benefits administration be improved by decentralisation?
Colin Talbot, Civil Service World. Nov 2019

We’ll be exploring more areas in future articles and posts as our research develops and the government’s policies unfold.

2 thoughts on “Levelling Up Government?

  1. Good to have caught you on the Fabian zoom on Monday, shame todays WIG technology didn’t work – would be interested in a chat about the role of a devolutionary settlement for England in levelling up, returning agency to all parts of the UK not just the obvious cities etc – some of the explored here

    https://labourcc.files.wordpress.com/2018/10/lcc-manifesto-2019-print-conference-edition.pdf

    all the best
    Hywel

    Hywel Lloyd
    Co-founder, Labour:COAST&COUNTRY

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