Economic development officer

Economic regeneration officer, economic adviser

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Economic development officers work with communities, local government and business to bring investment, jobs and facilities to an area.

Salary range: £22,000 to £50,000

How to become an economic development officer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly

University

You could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma, degree or postgraduate qualification in one of the following subjects:

  • regeneration
  • planning and surveying
  • economics
  • marketing
  • business management
  • construction management
  • housing

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

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Apprenticeship

You could complete a professional economist degree apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship

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Work

You could start as an assistant, researcher or administrator in an economic development unit, and then work your way up through training and promotion to become a development officer.

Direct application

You could apply directly if you’ve got a background in bidding for funding, managing projects, controlling budgets or marketing.

You’ll usually need experience from working in a related area, like:

  • town planning
  • community development
  • regeneration
  • business advice
  • construction management

More information

Further information

You can learn more about working in economic development through the Institute of Economic Development.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • knowledge of English language
  • knowledge of geography
  • the ability to work well with others
  • analytical thinking skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • persistence and determination
  • ambition and a desire to succeed
  • business management skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties could include:

  • developing projects to support local business growth 
  • building partnerships with communities, business networks and local government
  • bidding for local, national and European funding
  • setting up training schemes for local businesses and unemployed people
  • advising local businesses and community groups
  • promoting the local area to attract new employers and increase tourism
  • working on neighbourhood renewal projects
  • organising business fairs and giving presentations
  • managing budgets
  • attracting inward investment or bidding for funding

Working environment

You could work in an office.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to senior officer or economic policy manager. 

You could also move into freelance consultancy work, or work abroad with international development agencies.

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