Research in this report provides a nation-wide and consistent evidence base to support regional development investment decisions at the national, state and regional levels. This work helps policy practitioners design policy and interventions to target the regions where it matters most and in a way which is appropriate for the regional economies they seek to support. It gives regional leaders timely information that helps focus efforts in a more strategic way to grow regional Australia within specialised regions.
This research identifies regions that specialise in these industries (Map 1) and where jobs are critical to the local economy, and how these have performed over time. Specialised regions are those where there is a high proportion of local jobs in the industry compared to the national average for a place of that size. OECD experience shows that business-led specialisation approaches are effective in supporting regions to maintain their competitiveness in national and global contexts.
This report shows that specialised regions have not performed equally over time, with local conditions in some regions helping to drive employment growth, while local condition in others may be constraining it.
Local knowledge and deeper analysis is needed to identify what is occurring locally to drive or constrain job growth. Some factors could include the impacts of a new business or business expansion, variation of high human capital in the region, government or community programs, or natural assets in the region.