Local Funding Flows for Youth Employment and Skills

This project looks at supporting young people who face the most discrimination and disadvantage in the labour market.

The Connected Futures Fund (CFF) is a £16 million fund from the Youth Futures Foundation to support young people to get good jobs through pioneering local partnerships. 

The CFF is concerned with changing the ways that wider systems work in areas where significant numbers of young people face disadvantage. The funding is targeted at seven local areas in England with some of the highest NEET rates and deprivation indicators: Burnley, Hastings, D2N2, Hull, Lewisham, Blackpool, Brent.

In summer 2022, City-REDI were commissioned by the Youth Futures Foundation to undertake research to identify, describe and map the flows of funding from national to local areas for young people’s (aged 14-24 years) employment and skills. It is intended to provide evidence for, and inform, and where applicable include evidence from, two other Learning Lots commissioned for Phase One of the Connected Futures Fund (CFF): the Learning Partner providing support to local partnerships (Lot 1) and Local Labour Market Analysis providing a detailed CFF Futures Fund grants are made (Lot 2).


Skills and Local Labour Markets

Young Futures Foundation


Phase 1: To provide detailed insights into the flows of funding from national to local areas for young people’s employment and skills through desk review of existing studies and data and identification of varying funding models based on the types of funding that different areas are in receipt of.

Phase 2: To provide detailed understanding of one the funding models identified in stage 2 to understand the nature of funding flows in operation and the challenges and strengths of existing structures and systems. This will be achieved through a deep dive case study in a particular area involving conducting semi-structured interviews with stakeholders in the selected case study area.


Research Questions:


  1. Where does funding for local youth employment / skills activity come from?
  2. What kinds of organisations receive funding locally?
  3. What are the goals of different funding streams?
  4. What economic incentives exist for youth employment funding – from the government, partnerships, other entities?
  5. Who makes funding decisions about at different geographical scales? Are young people involved in those decisions?
  6. What funding models are most common in youth employment and skills?
  7. What are local actors incentivised to act on, care about and count?
  8. What are the intended outcomes? Who identified these outcomes? What outputs are monitored?
  9. Have different funding sources been evaluated?
  10. What levers exist for local policy makers to focus funding on the most marginalised young people?
  11. What are the future prospects for different funding streams?

Research Team

The projects brings together staff from across the City-REDI team with a range of data analysis and policy evaluation expertise and experience in using quantitative and qualitative methods. The following staff will be responsible for conducting research in each stage of the project:

Scoping: Anne Green, Abigail Taylor and Rebecca Riley will be responsible for conducting the project scoping.

Desk Research – review and analysis: Maryna Ramcharan, George Bramley, Hannes Read, Alice Pugh and Reen Blake-Carr.

Case Studies: members of the team, including Abigail Taylor, Charlotte Hoole, George Bramley, Rebecca Riley, Hannes Read, Alice Pugh, and Maryna Ramcharan.

Information for Policy Makers

We have established an Advisory Board made up of representatives from central government, regional government, academia, Further Education and the Third Sector with whom we can discuss issues regarding the scope, content and findings emerging from the work.

It is intended that a key outcome of the project will be the publication of a report analysing the following issues:

  • Who are the key players are who are involved in making decisions about funding at

national, international and local levels,

  • the extent of the involvement of young people in shaping decisions,
  • future funding prospects
  • the impact of local funding allocations on young people’s outcomes
  • how funding models could be improved in future.


Project lead contact details: 

Project Director – Anne Green: oversight, relationship management, quality assurance.

Project Manager Abigail Taylor: day-to-day contact with YFF and partner projects.

Project support contact details: 


WMREDI is funded by Research England and the WMREDI partnership

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