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Socio Economic Analysis

Shetland Input/Output Study 1998 and 2005

Shetland Industry SectorsThe purpose of the study was to produce a social accounting matrix for Shetland broken down into 31 industry sectors. It included a detailed and comprehensive survey of business accounts and household expenditure through questionnaire surveys, plus production of industry and household multipliers, and generation of scenarios. These studies were done jointly with Aberdeen University Business School and Fraser of Allander Institute at the University of Strathclyde.

Zet-Trans Survey

Northlink ferry 'Hjaltland' and Lerwick Ferry TerminalZetTrans, the Shetland Islands Council Transport Body commissioned Reference Economics to undertake a survey of residents and visitors travelling on NorthLink Ferries and Loganair flights out of Shetland over the period of a year.  Reference Economics approached McPherson Research who contracted us to undertake the survey of visitors on the ground at exit points in Shetland.

SEC Client Satisfaction Survey

The purpose of the project was to obtain views on satisfaction with and perception of services provided as well as scope for improvement and changes for the Shetland Enterprise Company.  It involved a survey of 300 clients of the SEC, and 50 non-clients, undertaken mainly through postal, but also face-to-face surveying methods.  A B Associates Ltd were also responsible for data inputting, cleansing and verification, analysis and report writing.

Your Voice

Spring 09 Your Voice PhotosWe were recently commissioned to conduct a biannual survey of a representative panel of Shetland residents to gauge public opinion known as “Your Voice”.  Tasks include questionnaire design, layout, coding and printing, questionnaire distribution and return, data entry and analysis and reporting.

Orkney Migrant Survey

The purpose of this study was to analyse and assess the current situation of migrant employment within Orkney, look at past and future trends and identify areas or issues which might arise, in particular those that might require public sector intervention.  It was based on desk research of relevant national and regional reports and statistics, and an employer based survey of 31 companies conducted within Orkney.

Socio-Economic Impact Assessment of a Bluemull Sound Fixed Link

Map showing Bluemull Sound - the piece of water between Shetland Northern Isles: Unst and Yell.The purpose of this study was to assess on the socio-economic impact which a tunnel between the islands in the north of Shetland; Unst and Yell would have on the local communities and economy of the Northern Isles of Shetland, as well as Shetland as a whole.

The report consisted of socio-economic analysis and also looked at potential for new business, and levels of employment this might generate.  This project involved a survey of all 18+ residents, 16-17 year olds, and youths from the age of 5, as well as businesses on all three of the Northern Isles (including Fetlar), and non-residents identified as regular travellers to the area.  This totalled over 3000 postal questionnaires, with school children being surveyed through face-to-face self-completion questionnaires.  This led to data inputting, cleansing and verification, analysis, report writing and the preparation of seven background reports.  We also used Cost benefit and NPV analysis to establish potential benefits and returns to the community of undertaking the investment.  This project also included a STAG assessment for the project.

Regional Impact Study of the Scapa Flow Container Transhipment Port Project

Potential site for Container Transhipment Port at Scapa Flow in OrkneyThe purpose of this study was to: Identify and quantify the economic impacts of the development of a £250M to £400M container transhipment port in Scapa Flow on the Orkney, North of Scotland and Scottish economies; research potential and opportunities for developing shipping links between Scapa and other ports as well as the opportunities for new business development in the North of Scotland.  Techniques we used included standard multipliers adapted for the project as well as cost benefit analysis and net present value calculations.

Socio-Economic Impact Assessments of the Proposed Development of Pier at Uyeasound

The new Uyeasound Pier from the Air - Photo: Tulloch DevelopmentsThe purpose of these studies was to assess the social and economic impact of proposed developments around Uyeasound.  These included the provision of a new pier, car park, marina and breakwater and industrial sites in the village.  The main techniques used were questionnaire surveys, analysis of economic and social benefits, multipliers, cost benefit analysis, and development of social evaluation matrices.  The pier was subsequently built by Tulloch Developments Ltd and completed in summer 2008.  Similar studies have also been carried out for comparable projects for Grutness, Voe and Walls, Shetland.

Economic Impact Assessment of Lerwick Harbour on the Shetland Economy (1996, 2000 and 2006)

Lerwick Harbour from the air - Photo: Lerwick Port AuthorityThe study remit followed on from a 1996 Impact Assessment of the Lerwick Harbour on the Shetland Economy.  The 2000 report analysed changes over the past four years, assessed whether constraints identified had been addressed and looked at the impact of proposed new developments.  The 2006 impact study looked at the constraints and opportunities for new developments as well as quantifying the dependence of the Shetland economy on the activities around the harbour.  A B Associates Ltd have also produced a strategy and business plan for the Lerwick Port Authority.

An Assessment of Existing Activity and Potential Future Development at SIC Ports in Shetland

Scalloway PierThe main aim of this report was to establish credible data on current activities and future potential development of all 10 SIC ports around Shetland.  This included, on an individual port basis, historical background analysis, and assessment of existing and potential development opportunities including tourism and marine/yacht development and small-scale fisheries.  This project also assessed competition between ports both within and out with the isles.  The overall market and demand for yacht facilities was analysed as part of this project, involving Sail Scotland.

Economic Impact of Job Losses on the Scalloway Port and Community

Scalloway from PierThis report focussed on the effect the reduction in the fisheries sector (catching, processing and ancillary services) has had on jobs in the Scalloway area.  The report identified the overall impact of the direct losses, as well as the potential of emerging projects to create employment, and also the identification of opportunities to strengthen the Scalloway economy.

Islesburgh Trust Socio-economic Impact and Evaluation of Performance

The two main objectives of this study were – to quantify the social and economic impact of the Islesburgh Trust and to identify indicators by which the performance of the Trust can be monitored and evaluated on an ongoing basis.  The project involved gathering data from various stakeholder groups of the organisation including the Trust Management Committee and staff and also with suppliers and users of the centre.

Shetland Retail Impact Study

This study was completed on behalf of the Economic Development Unit of the Shetland Islands Council to assess the impact of the new Tesco retail development on the retail/wholesale sector and on Shetland as a whole.  The study created a baseline for the retail sector for 2007/8 from work done in other areas and available nationally as well as empirical research in Shetland to establish floor space by categories and a small survey of selected businesses.  Data was collated on household retail and visitor spend available in Shetland and likely leakage, plus floor space and turnover data to judge whether there is capacity in the market for additional floor space now and in the future.

Socio-Economic Analysis of a New Music and Cinema Venue in Lerwick, Shetland.

Artists Impression of Mareel - Shetlands new Cinema and Music Venue - Photo: Shetland Arts and Gareth Hoskins ArchitectsThis study looked at the social and economic impact of a new cinema and music venue in Lerwick; it involved producing a baseline position of the music industry then assessed the proposal for a new facility for different scenarios.

Unst Evaluation

This was a socio-economic assessment of public assistance to Unst. Unst, a remote island in the north of Shetland, like many other remote communities faces a number of critical issues such as ongoing decline and aging of the population, remoteness from markets, cost and logistics if triple insularity, and lack of sustainable economic activity. The public sector responded to these issues by setting up a number of initiatives to help stimulate development within the community. The purpose of the project was to assess the success of different initiatives and to identify best practice locally and from the experience in other remote communities with a view to devising a strategy for the future that will help the island to become a more sustainable and vibrant community. The project involved some desk research; a survey of residents and other key stakeholders; analysis and evaluation and reporting of the findings.