Scotland & the EU Scotland's Economy

Scottish Business Buzz (17.05.17)

Scottish capital third place for top creative locations. 

Edinburgh has come in third place in a ranking of the UK’s top 25 locations for the creative industries, with Glasgow close behind in 5th place.

Both cities were scored highly for concentrations of creative businesses, creative professionals and millennial populations, according to the survey from property firm CBRE. The research also pointed to factors such as a high level of education and access to world-class universities – graduates from the University of Edinburgh’s School of Informatics was said to be a big draw for tech companies, being close to the best talent pools.

CBRE’s Audrey Dobson said: “Evidence shows that regional cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow have a critical mass of talent necessary to compete successfully in the creative sector. Additionally the return to urban living is easier to achieve in regional centres such as Glasgow and Edinburgh.”

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Employment in Scotland increase to take jobless rate below UK average

The labour market statistics also show that employment in Scotland increased by 5,000 and now stands at 2,620,000.

Unemployment in Scotland has fallen by 14,000 in the 3 months to March, taking the jobless rate to 4.4%, below the 4.6% of the UK as a whole.

Economy Secretary Keith Brown said: “Today’s statistics show that Scotland’s labour market continues to perform well in the face of significant economic challenges.

“Unemployment is down, employment is up and Scotland’s youth unemployment rate is the fourth lowest in the EU. This is welcome news.”

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EU funding for carbon capture proposal Project Acron

Peterhead power station was set to become the centre for Britain’s bid to install carbon capture and storage (CCS) on a gas-powered station – it would have been a world first – but the UK Government cancelled the £1 billion project after spending £100 million on a preparatory competition.

The project’s directors have announced that they have gained support from the EU funding round Advancing CCS Technologies (ACT), a part of the ERA-NET programme. Project Acorn is being developed by CO2DeepStore and has been approved for funding under the EU programme to progress feasibility studies in 2017 and 2018.

Professor Stuart Haszeldine, director of Scottish Carbon Capture and Storage, added: “Funding for the Acorn CCS project is an important first step towards decarbonising industry in Scotland as part of the UK’s overall efforts.

“In all of Europe, north-east Scotland is the location where CCS can be built most rapidly, with low-cost CO2 transport and very secure storage sites. Acorn also lights a path to sustainable offshore engineering and employment.”

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A single market solution is needed for the free movement of people 

Professor Anton Muscatelli, the principal and vice chancellor of Glasgow University, has called for the free movement of people to continue temporarily after the country has left the European Union.

Prof Muscatelli argued that there should be “some sort of single market solution, at the very least as a transition” and insisted that the UK should allow for different parts of the UK and different sectors to adopt varying policies on immigration.

Prof Muscatelli also argued a blanket policy on immigration post-Brexit would be wrong. Different nations and regions of the UK will have different skills shortages that they need to attract workers to fill, as will different sectors of the economy, the academic said.

He continued: “It’s a huge task to put that post-Brexit structure in place, but certainly a differentiated approach by nation, region and sector I think might be the sensible way to go.”

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Mark Tiffney from Dynamic Core Studios Clydebank asks how busy professionals can make healthy choices when pressed for time.

As a busy professional, entrepreneur or solopreneur, you likely have days that disappear before you even know what time it is.

The adrenalin kick from the ever-expanding to-do list, the constant message updates from the bottomless inbox and the clients who NEED their projects competed yesterday. All leading to hours passing in a flash and self-nurture, physical movement and posture may be the last thing on your mind.

In such situations, the go to is often to reach for the quick fix snack solutions. Or, if you have prepared something, it was likely put together based on what was easy to make and store rather than what was good for you.

All too often, even if the snack choice is intended to be healthy, the choice is a bad one.

Just because something says, ‘healthy and nutritious’ on the pack, doesn’t make it so.

If you were considering a contract or project for your company, would you sign up by only reading the heading of the contract or the sales pitch of the person selling you the idea? Or would you look a little deeper before investing time or money?

The problem is, most people, when making food choices, do not think so logically and rather justify those choices because it allows them to eat what they want. Similarly, when making exercise choices, the justification for the easy options all feel very plausible (I don’t want to over-train; that movement is bad for your knees; I need better shoes for that kind of exercise etc).

It comes down to an almost childlike approach of “I don’t like it” or “I want it” justified with adult rational.

Most people are perfectly aware of the choices that would make the most sense from a health and wellness perspective. But, their inner child helps force the justifications through and so that cereal bar, loaded with sugar, says it’s high in fiber and low in fat, so it’s bound to be healthy. And you get your sugar fix.

But, then you also get your blood sugar crash. You are un-nurtured and so you get a lack of focus and perhaps reach for the caffeine loaded energy drink forcing a further spike and crash. The cycle continues, but you are so busy, you don’t get time to evaluate the situation.

Often the problem is one of a lack of oxygen. Stress causes us to hold our breath and by simply taking a minute to takes some deep breaths, it brings you back into the present and gives you a chance to evaluate, make better choices and increase productivity.

Tip – Another option is, put your hand on the table and count your fingers.

Escape your inner child, act like a grown up and make grown up decisions that help look after and nurture your system (the way you might nurture your child) and break the cycle of “I don’t like it”. For more on this subject, you can read here and start making your choices work for you rather than have reflex justifications dictating your day.

Until next time, have a highly nurtured and successful week.

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About the author

Rhona Middler

Rhona was Business for Scotland's Engagement Executive and Events Manager.

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