Fraser of Allander Institute

Department of Economics Fraser of Allander Institute

Economics training courses (continuous professional development)

As part of a University that prides itself on being the ‘Place of Useful Learning’, the Institute works closely with organisations to help improve the skills and knowledge of their staff. Our economics courses – both accredited and CPD – are in high demand with participants from across the public, private and third sectors. All our courses use real-world examples to give participants an opportunity to see economics in action.

Alongside the CPD courses listed here, we also offer masterclasses in topics such as energy economics, behavioural economics and econometrics for policy evaluation. People can also sign up for individual modules of our Applied Economics MSc – please see here for further details.

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

The information on this page can be downloaded in a printable format below:

“I found the Scottish economy course run by the Fraser of Allander very helpful. The explanation of key economic concepts and trends will come in very useful for our work in the months ahead”

Nicola Curran, Scotrail

CPD courses

Understanding the Scottish economy

Understanding the Scottish economy

Outline

Identifying and interpreting changes in economic conditions can give businesses and public sector organisations an edge.

But for many, accessing clear and impartial information on how the economy is tracking can be anything but straightforward. The 1-day course provides participants with a plain-speaking insight into the world of economics and gives you practical tips on how to find and interpret key Scottish and UK economic trends and information.

It is our most popular introductory course in economics and provides a strong basis for further study and learning.

Is it right for me?

The course is designed for professionals in the private, public and third sectors who are interested in gaining an understanding of the economy and its impact on their organisation. The course does not require any prior formal background in economics.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand the fundamentals of how our economy works – including Scotland’s key sectors, unemployment trends and export markets
  • Be more informed of future economic trends and the implications for your organisation
  • Have a good understanding of key economic concepts and terminology – and what the jargon actually means!
  • Have a comprehensive databank of sources of information on the economy
  • Know how the economic policy landscape could impact on your organisation

Course delivered by Graeme Roy

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

"Graeme and his team did a great job of providing an introduction to the Scottish economy that was accessible and gave me a great grounding in the fundamentals as well as an appreciation of the challenges ahead.

The structure and pace of the course was good, the analysis and examples were easy to follow and to build upon in discussions during the day and afterwards. I also found the mix of other people attending the course really interesting and got a lot out of my conversations with them too.

I would recommend the Fraser of Allander course to anyone working in Scotland who needs an understanding of what’s driving the Scottish economy alongside then opportunities and challenges ahead."

Alastair Ross, Association of British Insurers (ABI)

Economic data for policy and business

Economic data for policy and business

Outline

Analysis of economic data can provide key insights and is a crucial element of a policymaker’s and business analyst’s toolkit. This can help to inform how resources should be best spent and provide an evidence base for different policy interventions and business strategies.

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction into the key concepts to be aware of and issues when carrying out economic data analysis in Scotland.

The course assumes no formal training in economics or statistics but would ideally suit people working – or with some experience – with the development or implementation of economic policy or in developing business plans, revenue forecasts or budget risk assessments.

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals working in an economic policy or business environment and are looking to carry out economic data analysis, or are seeking to commission such work from consultants.

It is also suitable for individuals who, whilst not directly involved in economic data analysis and policy formulation, may be responsible for setting overall strategic policy direction within an organisation.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand the role and value of economic data analysis 
  • Be able to advise on key economic concepts and figures
  • Have a good understanding of the limitations and strengths of different economic measures 
  • Understand the debate on the limitations of GDP and the arguments for wider measures of success
  • Be able to produce and communicate economic data analysis
  • Be confident in commissioning, interpreting and assessing economic data analysis undertaken by outside analysts, such as consultants

Course delivered by Mairi Spowage

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

“Now into its fifth decade, the FAI continues to provide the pre-eminent source of rigorous, independent insight into the Scottish economy and the policy choices that help shape its evolution. In a time of what some call post-truth politics the FAI’s impartial contribution is more vital than ever.”

Alf Young, The Times

Economic data for local government

Economic data for local government

Outline

Analysis of local economic data can provide key insights and is a crucial element of a policymaker’s toolkit. This can help to inform how local government resources should be best spent and provide an evidence base for different policy interventions.

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction into the key concepts to be aware of and issues when carrying out economic data analysis in Scotland, with a focus on local data analysis. 

The course assumes no formal training in economics or statistics but would ideally suit people working – or with some experience – with the development or implementation of local economic policy.

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals working in a local economic policy environment and are looking to develop economic policy and/or carry out economic data analysis, or are seeking to commission such work from consultants. 

It is also suitable for individuals who, whilst not directly involved in local economic data analysis and policy formulation, may be responsible for setting overall strategic local policy direction.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand the role and value of economic data analysis in the local public policy process
  • Be able to advise on key local economic concepts and figures
  • Have a good understanding of the limitations and strengths of different local economic measures 
  • Be able to produce and communicate local economic data analysis
  • Be able to navigate the different resources available for local data analysis
  • Be confident in commissioning, interpreting and assessing local economic data analysis undertaken by outside analysts, such as consultants or other organisations

Course delivered by Mairi Spowage

"In a fast-paced and uncertain global economy, it is important that local authorities keep up with global and national developments to assess the potential impacts and trends for their local and regional economies. The Fraser of Allander 'Understanding the Scottish Economy' course provided explanations of economic concepts and recent trends which will help inform our work on growing the North Ayrshire economy."

Julie McLachlan, North Ayrshire Council

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

Understanding inequality, poverty and inclusive growth

Understanding inequality, poverty and inclusive growth

Outline

Concern over levels of poverty and inequality has become increasingly mainstream in policy-making. The Scottish Parliament has committed to achieving dramatic reductions in child poverty by 2030, whilst the Scottish Government has placed ‘inclusive growth’ at the heart of its Economic Strategy.

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction to the concepts of inequality and inclusive growth, helping participants to understand key policy initiatives and frameworks for reducing inequality and poverty and achieving more balanced and sustainable growth. 

The course assumes no formal training in economics.

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals who want to know more about the economic factors at the heart of economic inequality and inclusive growth, how they are measured, and how they relate to concepts of fairness and equality of opportunity. 

It is also suitable for individuals who wish to know more about the targets and aspirations that the Scottish Government has set, and the policies that might be effective in attaining those.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand how concepts such as inequality, poverty, social mobility and inclusive growth differ from one another, and how they are measured
  • Understand how levels of poverty and inequality in Scotland and the UK have been changing, and what has driven those changes
  • Know about the Scottish Government’s targets and aspirations for poverty, inequality and inclusive growth, and have an overview
  • Be able to critically appraise and debate how different policies might affect inequality and poverty

Course delivered by David Eiser

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

"The FAI is an invaluable resource and source of high quality and independent research and analysis across a range of policy which are central to the concerns of the STUC, our affiliated unions and working people generally."

Grahame Smith, General Secretary, STUC

Understanding the Scottish budget and fiscal policy issues

Understanding the Scottish budget and fiscal policy issues

Outline

The Scottish budget is becoming increasingly complex as further tax and social security powers are devolved. The Scottish Government’s fiscal policy decisions – covering both tax and spend – have significant implications for public services, households, and the economy as a whole.

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction to the Scottish budget, helping participants to understand key concepts as well as the scope for fiscal policy reform in Scotland. 

The course assumes no formal training in economics. 

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals who want to know more about the financial rules and constraints shaping public policy decisions in Scotland. 

It is also suitable for individuals who wish to know more about the fiscal policy decisions that have been taken by the Scottish Government in recent budgets, and the implications of these for households and the economy.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand how the Scottish Government’s budget is determined, and how the different elements of the budget fit together
  • Understand the risks and constraints that the Scottish budget is exposed to, and be able to appraise how well the government is able to manage those risks
  • Be able to discuss the potential for tax reform in Scotland, and articulate the impacts of different options
  • Have an overview of how the distribution of devolved public spending has changed in recent years, and how policy commitments will shape the pattern of public spending in the coming years
  • Understand how local government finances are determined, and how they are changing 

Course delivered by David Eiser

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

Introduction to economic policy

Introduction to economic policy 

Outline

Government has an important role in providing goods and services that we all depend upon. But government policy is also crucial in helping to support faster economic growth and the distribution of such gains. 

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction into the world of economic policy through the lens of the Scottish Government’s Economic Strategy and the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy. 

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals working in economic development or and an economic policy environment who require an appreciation of the economic arguments and analysis underpinning the Scottish Government’s Economic Strategy and the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy. 

It is also suitable for individuals who, whilst not directly involved in economic policymaking, seek an overview and understanding of the core economic policies being pursued in Scotland.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Have an appreciation and understanding of the Scottish Government’s Economic Strategy 
  • Have an appreciation and understanding of the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy
  • Appreciate the economic rationale underpinning both strategies – and the risks and trade-offs 
  • Identify the key economic National Performance Framework Indicators and track their performance over time 
  • Understand key concepts such as ‘inclusive growth’ and the ‘entrepreneurial state’ and how they differ from past policies on the economy 
  • Know what the key roles and responsibilities are of central government, local government and Scotland’s Enterprise and Skills agencies

Course delivered by Graeme Roy

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

Economic appraisal and evaluation for policymakers

Economic appraisal and evaluation for policymakers

Outline

Effective economic evaluation and appraisal are crucial elements of a policymaker’s toolkit. They help to inform how government resources should be spent and ensure that decisions are taken in the public interest. 

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction to economic appraisal and evaluation. 

The course assumes no formal training in economics.

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals carrying out economic appraisals and evaluation exercises or are seeking to commission such work from consultants. 

It is also suitable for individuals who, whilst not directly involved in economic evaluation and appraisal exercises, may be operating at a more strategic level where value for money and financial accountability is key.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Understand the role and value of economic appraisal and evaluation in the public policy process 
  • Be able to advise on what constitutes ‘value for money’ 
  • Appreciate the challenges of measuring the full costs/benefits of policies, including how to value non-market goods and services 
  • Be aware of the key stages of an effective evaluation and appraisal 
  • Have a working knowledge of the techniques upon which appraisal and evaluation of economic developments and policies should be based – including the ‘Green Book’ 
  • Be confident in commissioning, interpreting and assessing economic appraisal and evaluation reports undertaken by outside analysts, such as consultants or other organisations

Course delivered by Graeme Roy

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

"To understand and address the key economic challenges facing Scotland, we need access to first class data and analysis. As we continue to face tough economic conditions at home and years of Brexit related uncertainty ahead, the role of the FAI has never been more important. Their expert approach helps businesses and other stakeholders across Scotland to cut through the noisy world of economic punditry and focus minds on the policy that really matters."

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland

Understanding International trade and Scotland

Understanding International trade and Scotland 

Outline

Access to international markets has been one of the engines of growth for firms across the world. Today, firms depend on overseas markets for their supply chains as well as a destination for their products. The global marketplace is constantly changing, driven by new technologies as well as policies shifts, such as Brexit. 

This 1-day course will provide an accessible introduction into the economics of international trade and trade policy, helping participants to understand key concepts and the trading options facing Scotland.

Is it right for me?

Suitable for individuals working in industry, economic development or in an economic policy environment who are looking to support the international aspirations of Scottish firms in entering new markets and in facing competition from overseas firms.

Key Learning Objectives

By the end of the course, you will:

  • Have gained an understanding of why countries benefit from international trade; 
  • Recognise that international trade has casualties as well as beneficiaries; 
  • Have an appreciation of the importance of international trade to Scotland; 
  • Be aware of Scotland’s principal trading markets and how these are changing over time; 
  • Understand the implications of trade restrictions imposed both by the UK and by our trading partners; 
  • Appreciate the importance of international trading institutions, such as the World Trade Organisation and the European Union; 
  • Have an understanding of the options facing Scotland and the UK following Brexit, in terms of the future trading relationship with the EU as well as potential new trade deals.

Course delivered by Ian Wooton

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to contact us at fraser@strath.ac.uk.

Our experts

Dr Grant Allan

Grant is a Senior Lecturer and Director of Postgraduate Taught Programmes within the Department of Economics. He is also Deputy Director of the Fraser of Allander. Grant has research interests in regional economic analysis and modelling, particularly in the areas of energy and tourism. He has worked on a number of major interdisciplinary research projects funded by the Scottish Government, UK Energy Research Centre, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and European Commission. Grant has also undertaken consultancy, economic surveys and bespoke research on behalf of a wide range of firms and organisations across Scotland. He is a member of the Scottish Government’s external stakeholder group on the use of Economic Statistics.

Expert in:

  • Energy-economy-environmental modelling
  • Regional economic analysis
  • Renewable energy technologies and policies
  • Tourism economics

 

 

    

David Eiser

David has led the Fraser of Allander Institute’s work on Fiscal Policy since 2016. He is a recognised expert on Scotland’s budget and the operation of the fiscal framework, and has published extensively on these issues in academic journals and in online and print media. David has been the Fiscal Framework Adviser to the Scottish Parliament’s Finance and Constitution Committee since August 2016. David’s other area of research interest is in labour markets and inequality. He has published a number of reports on aspects of poverty, inequality and social mobility in Scotland. David was appointed as one of the Scottish Government’s Poverty and Inequality Commissioners in September 2017.

Expert in:

  • Devolved funding arrangements
  • Scottish budget
  • Local Government finance
  • Labour market 
  • Poverty and inequality

 

 

  

Dr Stuart McIntyre

Stuart McIntyre is a lecturer in the Department of Economics. Stuart is also a Faculty Research Affiliate at the Regional Research Institute at West Virginia University and coordinator of the Department’s introductory course in economics.  Stuart leads on the FAI’s policy evaluation and economic impact work, having recently completed studies for central and local government as well as major private sector firms.  He is a regular commentator on unemployment and employment in Scotland and has been called upon as an expert witness to the Scottish Parliament’s Economy, Jobs and Fair Work Committee.

Expert in:

  • Economic policy evaluation
  • Regional economic analysis
  • Applied economic data analysis
  • Labour market

 

 

 

Professor Graeme Roy

Graeme is Director of the Fraser of Allander Institute. He re-joined the Fraser in May 2016 after 8 years in the Scottish Government, where he was formerly a Senior Economic Adviser and head of the First Minister’s Policy Unit. Graeme is editor of the Fraser of Allander Economic Commentary and a regular commentator on the Scottish economy. He is also part of a team within the Institute looking at a series of longer-term research questions including topics in fiscal policy, energy and the environment. He is a past adviser to the Scottish Parliament’s Economy, Jobs and Fair Work Committee and is a member of the Scottish Government’s Labour Market Strategy Group and the UK Government’s Scottish Business Taskforce.

Expert in:

  • Scottish Economy
  • UK and global economies
  • Scottish and UK economic policy

 

 

 

Mairi Spowage

Mairi Spowage is a Visiting Researcher at the Fraser of Allander. Mairi is leading on various projects to improve economic statistics in Scotland, looking at inter-regional trade, business engagement and encouraging graduates into careers in analysis. She is also developing the Fraser’s capacity building CPD programme in the use of national and local economic data and statistics. Previously, Mairi was the Deputy Chief Executive of the Scottish Fiscal Commission and the Head of National Accounts at the Scottish Government, and has over a decade of experience working in different areas of statistics and analysis, including transport, household surveys and performance measurement. 

Expert in:

  • Economic statistics
  • National accounting
  • Economic and fiscal forecasting
  • Local economic data & statistics
  • Publishing and disseminating official statistics

 

 

 

Professor Ian Wooton

Ian is an international trade theorist, with a particular interest in trade policy and international factor movements. He is an established authority in international economics and has published widely in the area. His research interests and publications are primarily in international trade theory and policy, including economic geography, discriminatory trading agreements and customs unions, trade and the environment, international and intersectoral factor mobility, and foreign direct investment and multinational enterprises. His current research projects primarily focus on various aspects of international competition for foreign direct investment by multinational corporations. Ian has acted as a consultant to the World Bank, HM Treasury, and the Scottish Parliament, among others.

Expert in:

  • International trade theory 
  • International trade policy
  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)
  • Trade agreements

 

If you would like to discuss how we can work to develop bespoke training for your organisation or for details on how to find out more about our open courses, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Address

Fraser of Allander Institute
Strathclyde Business School
University of Strathclyde
199 Cathedral Street
Glasgow
G4 0QU

Triple accredited

AACSB, AMBA and Equis logos
Winner THE 2016 Business School of the year logo