Research Report

Evaluation of the Scottish Government’s Inward Investment Support

ERC Research report for the Scottish Government


ERC, Centre for Business Prosperity

Associated Themes
  • Business Growth

The Enterprise Research Centre (ERC) and Centre for Business Prosperity (CBP) at Aston University were commissioned by the Scottish Government (SG) to undertake the evaluation of
Scotland’s inward investment promotion support provided by its delivery partners. The evaluation  consists of two strands:

– Detailed business survey and interviews with supported beneficiaries in the period of
2018/19 to 2020/21 intended to identify and assess the following: impacts from the support
(incl. to the wider economy), mechanisms of how impact was achieved, which support types
work best, and lessons learned for the delivery;

– Management Information review and analysis of inward investment activities over six
financial years from 2016/17 to 2021/22 intended to provide additional context.

The evaluation focused on “validated successes” as categorised by the delivery partners; that is, inward investment projects that successfully landed in Scotland following the support. Inward
investment support was provided to new projects (first time investors to Scotland), expansion projects (existing investors in Scotland, supported to create new jobs), safeguarding projects
(existing investors in Scotland, supported to safeguard/maintain existing jobs) and projects involving both (expansion and safeguarding, new and expansion). The key performance metric for
inward investment is the number of planned jobs created and/or safeguarded in Scotland.