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Developing workforce skills for a strong economy

Government has supported and incentivised the development of skills in the workforce over many years through publicly-funded programmes. However, there are concerns about skills shortages in a variety of sectors, and the impact on the country’s productivity and economic growth. Currently, the COVID-19 pandemic, the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, and the government’s commitment to meeting net zero targets, are contributing to significant changes in the skills needed in the labour market. 

The Department for Education is the lead department for developing workforce skills in England. It is responsible for working with many different bodies, including other central government departments, local government and private sector employers, to drive economic growth through improving the skills pipeline. 

This study will consider whether government has an effective approach to supporting the development of workforce skills in England. It will examine whether government: 

  • understands the country’s current and future workforce skills needs;
  • has a coherent approach to supporting skills development; and 
  • has effective monitoring and evaluation arrangements for its portfolio of initiatives.