Our published studies with direct relevance for Wales are available below. LE Wales consultants have also contributed to many other published London Economics studies and Indecon studies.

Much of our work is client confidential and so is not published.

Published Studies

Fees charged for GCSE and AS/A level qualifications in Wales (to 2017/18). This report for Qualifications Wales sets out Awarding Body exam fees, showing how they have changed over time and how they compare with the fees of awarding bodies operating in England.

Research on proposed changes to charging for social care.
Detailed assessment for the Welsh Government (2016) of the cost impact of two types of reform to social care funding in Wales: increases to the capital limit used to determine whether a person self-funds the full cost of their residential care, or whether they receive financial support towards this from their local authority; and introduction of a full disregard of the War Disablement Pension (WDP) in financial assessments for charging for social care and support. Both types of reform were introduced in fulfilment of the Welsh Government’s “Taking Wales Forward” commitments.

Paying for Care: First Report and Paying for Care: Second report. We appraised the options for reform of the system of paying for adult social care services for the Welsh Government (2014). This involved qualitative and quantitative work including the use of the LE Wales Care Funding Model to project future care funding needs under a number of policy options, including tax funded care and a new social insurance fund for Wales. The work involved the collection of data from Welsh local authorities, the collation of data from ONS surveys, and telephone interviews with stakeholders as well as interaction with the Paying for Care Stakeholder Group.

Impact of DLA reforms on working age people in Wales and Impact of reforms to DLA and Attendance Allowance on older people in Wales.Two studies for the Welsh Government (2011) that involved the assessment of potential impacts of UK Coalition Government reforms to Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance in respect of working age and older adults in Wales. The analysis involved projections of future demand and cost for these benefits and the proposed Personal Independence Payment based on a cohort model for Wales that was developed for this analysis.

Review of respite care in Wales. This review for the Welsh Assembly Government in 2010 presents data on publicly funded respite care services in Wales for both adults and children/young people; reports on consultations with carers; and makes a number of policy recommendations. The recommendations form the basis of a public consultation by the Welsh Assembly Government.

Research into an allowance and fees framework for foster carers. This research, by LE Wales and the Hadley Centre for Adoption and Foster Care Studies, was commissioned by the Welsh Assembly Government. The aim of the research was to provide a more defined methodology to estimate the costs to foster parents of bringing up a fostered child to be used as a basis for setting minimum fostering allowances across Wales. The research also considered issues relevant to the development of a ‘fees framework’ for foster carers in Wales.

Statistical investigation of needs proxies. This research was undertaken by LE Wales during 2009 for the Independent Commission on Funding and Finance for Wales (the ‘Holtham Commission’). Using the funding allocation mechanisms for health, local government and schools in England, the research shows that it is possible to replicate these funding outcomes with a high degree of accuracy by using much simpler needs-based formulae. The Holtham Commission concluded from this research that “it should be possible to generate a simple needs-based formula to replace Barnett that also retains a high degree of completeness”.

Choices and barriers faced by lone parents in accessing employment and learning. This research aims to study the relative importance of the various choices and constraints faced by lone parents in Wales and to establish a comprehensive list of the barriers faced by lone parents who wish to access work or learning.

The use of needs based formulae in the allocation of public resources. This report for the Independent Commission on Funding and Finance for Wales (the ‘Holtham Commission’) reviews the international literature on the use of needs based formulae for allocating public funds. The report provides a discussion of some of the key issues that are associated with constructing and using needs based distribution formulae and provides an indication of the types of formulae in use.

Exploratory Study into the Effects of Changes in Business Ownership on Employment and Wages.This research involves a broad analysis of the trends in changes in business ownership, with particular focus on Wales, and a detailed review of the economic and econometric evidence relating to the effects of such changes.

Review of non-residential social care charges in Wales. A report with accompanying baseline assessment,  which provides an analysis of local authority charging for non-residential social care services and of the policy options for introducing more consistency in such charging.

Innovation in the Water Industry in England and Wales. As part of the independent Cave Review of competition and innovation in water markets, London Economics compared innovation across all water and sewerage companies in England and Wales. The work also provides international comparisons of innovation, and assesses the barriers to innovation and how these may be addressed.

Interim Evaluation of Welsh Medium Teaching Schemes. This interim evaluation was undertaken by LE Wales and Dateb for the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW). The main objective was to assess the extent to which the Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme and the Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowship Scheme had been successful to date and to identify any lessons about their operation that might be used to inform future developments. It involved both desk research and interviews with stakeholders.

Economic impacts of large scale infrastructure investment. This study for the Welsh Assembly Government reviews the international literature on the economic impacts of large scale investments in both physical and intellectual infrastructure. Evidence across a range of sectors is examined, including transport, ICT, education and renewable energy.

The distribution of Supporting People funds in Wales. Supporting People is a Welsh Assembly Government program that provides funding for housing-related support services aimed at vulnerable people. LE Wales were commissioned by the Welsh Assembly Government to examine the feasibility of introducing a formula-based mechanism for the distribution of Supporting People funds to local authorities. The research concludes that the development of a distribution formula for Supporting People in Wales is feasible and that if it is decided to adopt such an approach, the preferred approach should be one based on a statistical analysis of needs and costs.

Intake planning: initial teacher training for Welsh medium school teachers. We advised the Welsh Assembly Government on methods for projecting the number of initial teacher training places needed for Welsh medium school teachers, based on an analysis of the supply and demand for Welsh medium teachers.

The cost of Welsh medium provision in higher education institutions. London Economics were commissioned by HEFCW to undertake a study to determine in detail the additional costs that can be associated with delivery of courses and modules through the medium of Welsh. Our final report was presented to a sector seminar  and HEFCW subsequently made changes to the arrangements for the Welsh medium funding premium.

Economic forecasts for skills gap projections. A review for the Future Skills Wales Partnership of the economic forecasts and forecast models used by Education and Learning Wales (ELWa) and its partners. Our report sets out a number of recommendations on how greater benefits could be derived from the forecasting-related activities, and examines how regional data and regional forecasts can be used in a skills’ gap projection exercise.

Modelling the Higher Education estate. Analysis for the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW), and its equivalents in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, of the factors that drive the costs of the non-residential estate for higher education institutions.

Student finance regimes. This research, undertaken on behalf of million+ (formerly the Campaign for Mainstream Universities), reviews the student finance regime in Wales, and in other UK countries, and examines the key similarities and differences between each regime. The study provides data showing a significant increase between 2000 and 2006 in the number of Welsh students choosing to study in Wales instead of in England.

Business impacts of environment, health and safety regulation. We analysed the impacts on businesses in the chemicals sector of a range of environmental and health and safety regulations, making recommendations to the DTI for improvements to regulation. Our analysis was based on a series of interviews with large and SME businesses in Wales, England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

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