Government’s recent white paper, Skills for jobs: lifelong learning for opportunity and growth, sets out an ambition for College Business Centres to work with employers to drive innovation and productivity. In late 2020, Gatsby supported the Think consultancy to review the scope, scale, and impact of some existing business support services, and consider how colleges can contribute to this landscape. The project engaged LEPs, growth hubs, further education (FE) institutions and local and national government officials. The work explored existing collaborations and what might be done to further strengthen the connection between business support and post-16 institutions.
In this guest article the report’s author, James Farr, introduces findings from the work, which are described in more detail in the full report.
The White Paper’s plan to create College Business Centres is a positive step, but a close working relationship with business support services is required if colleges are to best enable local employers to innovate