Strathclyde Business School Department of Economics

Economic modelling

The Fraser of Allander has been at the forefront of economic modelling for over forty years, including building the first ever detailed set of national macroeconomic accounts for Scotland.

A major research activity of the Fraser remains the construction and use of economic databases and technical models:

  • Macroeconomic Modelling
  • Databases

Macroeconomic Modelling

The macro modelling team in the Fraser is recognised as world-class with research regularly published in top-ranking academic journals. The team have also built be-spoke models for policymakers, including the Scottish Government who now use a FAI developed model for their own policy development work.

At the centre of the FAI’s expertise is the building of computable general equilibrium (CGE) models of the national and regional economy.

CGE models are detailed representations of the real-world economy which capture the inter-linkages between the private sector, government, net trade, the labour market and households.

These models provide invaluable information not just at a national level but at a sectoral level and inter-regional basis – giving them the flexibility to address distributional and equality issues.

Over the years, this work has been developed with support from the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the Scottish Government and the European Union.

These models have been used to address a range of topics of policy concern, including issues relating to public spending, constitutional change, and to cross-disciplinary issues such as energy-economy-environment interactions and the consequences of energy policies, efficiency and new technology.

For further details please contact peter.mcgregor@strath.ac.uk

Economic databases and accounts

The Fraser regularly produces and uses multi-sectoral economic accounts. We are keen that such databases are available to the wider academic and research community for their use.

Below, we provide some of these databases which have been produced in recent years. Anyone wishing to know about these databases – or to discuss their use – please email fraser@strath.ac.uk and a member of the modelling team will be in touch.

Bi-regional Scotland-rest of the UK Social Accounting Matrix

The bi-regional Scotland-RUK SAM has been developed through the ESRC Future of the UK and Scotland Initiative (Ref: ES/L003325/1)). This is based on a UK Industry by Industry (IxI) analytical Input-Output Table. Unfortunately, the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) does not supply the Input-Output accounts for the UK in this form. Furthermore, ONS does not give access to a full set of Supply and Use tables that would enable the straightforward construction of the IxI table. The ONS only publishes a full Product by Product (PxP) IO table, a Use table and an incomplete Supply Table, where some of the entries are suppressed due to confidentiality issues.

The second step is to construct the SAM for Scotland. The starting point is the 2010 Input-Output Table for Scotland produced by the Scottish Government. Data from the households and government income accounts given by the Scottish National Accounts Programme are used to fill the sub-matrices of the SAM. These sources are sufficient to obtain a detailed SAM. However, the lack of data on the secondary distribution processes inhibits a proper assembly of the sub matrix of income transfers between institutions as against what is available for the UK. Therefore, where the information coming from the Scottish sources described above is not sufficient to split payments and receipts among institutions, we use shares derived from the UK SAM to determine the missing values.

Thanks go to the Scottish Government Input-Output and economic modelling teams for their help and advice on the Scottish data.

Data available for download are the following:

2009 Social Accounting Matrix for Scotland

Computed by Andrew Ross and Tobias Emonts-Holley at the Fraser of Allander Institute, Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde, 2014. This work was jointly supported by the Economic and Social Research Council and the Scottish Government [ES/J500136/1].

The 2009 Social Accounting Matrix (SAM) details the flows of income and expenditure through the Scottish economy. These data are essential for modelling the response of the economy to proposed changes in, for example, government expenditures and taxes. The SAM is built using primarily National Accounts data from Scotland and the UK. More detailed versions of the SAM are currently being developed. Upcoming releases of the SAM will include disaggregate Labour, Government and Household accounts.

The fully disaggregated 2009 Scottish SAM, the Income and Expenditure Accounts and the undergirding methodology are available here:

2004 UK industry-by-industry analytical Input-Output tables

Developed through Professor Karen Turner's ESRC Climate Change Leadership Fellow project (ESRC ref: RES-066-27-0029) at the Fraser of Allander Institute, Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde, 2009.

Derived from Wiedmann, T., Wood, R., Lenzen, M., Minx, J., Guan, D. and Barett, J. (2008). Deelopment of an Embedded Carbon Emissions Indicator - Producing a Time Series of Input-Output Tables and Embedded Carbon Dioxide Emissions for the UK by using a MRIO Data Optimisation System. Final Report to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs by Stockholm Environment Institute at the University of York and Centre for Integrated Sustainability Analysis at the University of Sydney. Project REF: EV02033, July 2009. DEFRA, London, UK. Download report at:

Thanks go to the Scottish Government Input-Output team for their help and advice in deriving the analytical tables.

For further details please contact fraser@strath.ac.uk

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