Combined Authority delivers another key part of devolution deal with launch of West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership to boost inclusive digital skills

The West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership will bring together digital advocates and key leaders from business, education, local communities and the third sector to form a collaborative partnership to support the region’s vision to transform lives through digital tech.

Another key part of the West Yorkshire devolution deal has been delivered through the launch of the West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership.  

The West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership will bring together digital advocates and key leaders from business, education, local communities and the third sector to form a collaborative partnership to support the regions vision to transform lives through digital tech.  

The launch of the Local Digital Skills Partnership will kick off with a virtual event on Thursday, 15 October from 10:30am – 12:30pmThe event will hear from leaders from across politics, business and the third sector with discussions focusing on the importance of digital skills to the West Yorkshire economy; the importance of SMEs and evolving digital skillsgrowing the workforce for the future and building a sustainable, inclusive economic recovery.  

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and skills lead, said: 

The West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership is fantastic initiative that will bring together key leaders from across our region to support the growth of digital skills by reducing the digital divide and creating opportunities for all.   

“As we focus on our long-term economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is now more important than ever that we look to new ways to ensure that everyone can have the skills to meet the needs of the economy. We want to rebuild a more inclusive and sustainable economy that works for everyone.”  

Minister for Digital and Culture, Caroline Dinenage, said: 

“We are delighted to launch the seventh Local Digital Skills Partnership in West Yorkshire Combined Authority. The Partnership will bring together key regional stakeholders from across the public, private and charity sectors to work collaboratively to boost digital skills and strengthen the local economy. 

"It is clear tech will play a crucial role in our economic recovery and it is vital everyone has the opportunity to develop the digital skills they need to access new opportunities." 

The Local Digital Skills Partnership is part of West Yorkshire's ambitious devolution deal and provides a unique and exciting opportunity to influence the digital skills landscape across the region. The partnership has been created to inspire change and tackle local digital skills challenges, with the following priorities:  

  • To inspire the growth of digital skills across West Yorkshire by reducing the digital divide with opportunities for all  
  • To transform digital skills through adoption across SMEs of West Yorkshire to grow the local economy and boost productivity  
  • To inspire and influence the workforce of the future by collaborating with education providers and employers to ensure the future generation have the skills to meet the needs of the economy   

By supporting the growth of digital skills across West Yorkshire, the partnership will be helping the region’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic by reducing the digital divide to enable inclusive growth, boosting productivity for local businesses and ensuring everyone has the skills to meet the future needs of the economy.  

 Prior to the pandemic, Leeds City Region had the fastest growing digital sector in the country, with employment growth of 48% between 2015 and 2018. For the furloughed, recently unemployed or people who’d like to upskill the Combined Authority offers range of free, online courses through our [re]boot scheme. There are courses in coding, digital marketing, cyber security and more.   

 For more information on the West Yorkshire Local Digital Skills Partnership, please visit: https://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/west-yorkshire-local-digital-skills-partnership/  

To register for the virtual launch event, please visit: https://week.digileaders.com/talks/west-yorkshire-combined-authority-ldsp-launch/