Evaluating Rotherham’s Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy

The “Deprivation in Rotherham” study was commissioned by Rotherham Council as part of the process to review and refresh the Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy, and to develop a wider and deeper understanding of the deprivation trends and patterns across Rotherham. The Council commissioned OCSI to carry out the study.

Our approach
The project carried out a wide range of analysis, including; identifying how Rotherham and the most deprived areas were “closing the gap”; developing an atlas of deprivation; validating the Rotherham Neighbourhood Renewal Fund targeting strategy; and helping update the way Rotherham monitors the impact of programmes. Data sources that were used in the project included the Indices of Deprivation 2004 (ID2004), Census 2001, DWP benefit datasets, and DfES pupil attainment data (from the residential-based PLASC dataset). Detailed datasets from local partner agencies were also used in the study, including HB and CTB information, LEA datasets, life expectancy and mortality rates, teenage pregnancies, Higher Education applications, also crime and housing datasets.

The project has been highlighted by LARIA news as a good example of using evidence at local level.

The OCSI study found that the Local Index of Multiple Deprivation (LIMD) was an effective and accurate method for identifying the geographical target areas for neighbourhood renewal resources. Additionally, there was a strong match between the LIMD and national deprivation datasets including the ID2004 and key benefits datasets.

Evidence from the study and the validation of the Targeting Strategy supported two extensions to the way neighbourhood renewal support was targeted:

  • The NRS target areas were extended from the 20% to the 25% most deprived areas, resulting in the identification of 13 Target Areas
  • The study further highlighted that geographical targeting alone would not tackle multiple deprivation in Rotherham, and four target groups were highlighted for NRF support:
    • Minority Ethnic Communities and Asylum Seekers
    • Disabled people and their carers
    • Vulnerable Older People and their Carers
    • Deprived Children and Young People.

To find out how OCSI can help you make effective use of the evidence base please Contact Us.

See more examples of OCSI projects on the All Projects page.


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