Document Abstract

In the zone? Have enterprise zones delivered the jobs they promised?

Assesses how well enterprise zones has performed five years after their inception in 2012. Uses data from the Office for National Statistics’ Business Structure Database. Looks at the impact of the first 24 enterprise zones on jobs in their local area, the main stated reason for their creation. Finds that jobs growth has been underwhelming; the jobs created were mainly in low-skilled local services activities; displacement accounted for over a third of the new jobs; and enterprise zones in city centres performed better than zones in other areas. Determines that, while the stated goal of enterprise zones was job creation, the ability to borrow against future business rates increases to invest in property, public realm and infrastructure has been of benefit to some areas, though this ability does not require an enterprise zone. Concludes that there should be greater caution over the creation of enterprise zones or any other area-based initiative, rather, those places that have struggled to attract higher-skilled businesses into their economies should address the barriers as to why that is the case.


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Centre for Cities
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Centre for Cities

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