Scotland’s international competitiveness within Western Europe

Eichler, Martin and Rufer, Rebekka and Wagner, Andrea (2014) Scotland’s international competitiveness within Western Europe. Fraser of Allander Economic Commentary, 37 (3). pp. 90-107. ISSN 2046-5378

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The paper measures regional competitiveness of Scotland in comparison to ten EU regions and small countries using the International Benchmarking Index Family (‘IB Index Family’) developed by BAK Basel Economics.1 The IB Index Family contains an index with three dimensions of competitiveness: Performance, Attractiveness and Structural Potential. The Performance Index measures recent economic success; the Attractiveness Index measures how well a region is an attractive location to companies and highly-qualified individuals; and the Structural Potential Index estimates future potential economic growth based on current economic structure. The application of the IB Index Family provides a first-step into a more in-depth benchmarking of the competitiveness of a region, which is necessary when working towards detailed policy conclusions. The paper explains these measurement tools and applies them in a short benchmarking analysis of Scotland and ten EU regions and small nations (e.g. Ireland, Norway, Western Sweden etc.).