In recent years, the UK Government and devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have all stresses the pivotal role of the skills agenda as a key driver in tackling a wide range of economic and social problems. Notably, the Leitch Review of Skills stated that ‘skills is the most important lever within our control to create wealth and to reduce social deprivation’ (Leitch, 2006; 2). In order to achieve the objectives identified by the UK Government, the review put forward a series of targets focused on improving qualifications. However, many functions around employment and training policy are devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and therefore a range of distinct responses have emerged. The Welsh Assembly Government has stressed the importance of developing an integrated response to these challenges – combining skills, employment and business development policy. However, the approach adopted by the Welsh Assembly Government is constrained by the nature of the devolved settlement – although education and training functions are devolved, employment policy remains centralised within UK Government.
Employment, Training, Policy, Wales, WISERD