Mr. Shaw, Ken

Head of Employability and Talent Development

  • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
City of Edinburgh Council

Language skills

Native or bilingual proficiency (I have a speaking proficiency equivalent to that of an educated native speaker)

Last updated: 2016/09/05


I am part of the Economy Service at the City of Edinburgh Council focusing on employability and building an inclusive labour market. With 27 years’ experience in economic development and regeneration, I helped establish the city’s employability partnership (Joined up for Jobs), which has been a catalyst for service integration across public agencies and improved outcomes for job seekers and employers. In 2010, in a further evolution of Joined up for Jobs, I led the review of local employability interventions that; consolidated services, strengthened employer engagement, introduced a shared client management system, tightened integration with the city’s Economic Strategy, and increased the focus on progression and sustained outcomes as the primary measure of success. The review made extensive used of co-production with citizens and partners to identify priorities and design services to better reflect the needs of citizens, and deliver enhanced long term impact and value for money. Recently I led the design and development of the Edinburgh Guarantee, a targeted cross-sector partnership that sought to increase the number of school-leavers securing a positive destination- work, education or job focused training. In a five year period the Guarantee helped increase positive destinations from 82.5% to 92.3% and has strengthen partnership joint working between the Public, Private and Third Sectors opening up more opportunities for young people. This approach is now being rolled out in other areas. Currently I am working with colleagues on the development of an inclusive regional economic growth programme as part of the cross-authority “City Deal” partnership, providing specialist input on the developemnt of an Integrated Regional Employability and Skills Programme.

Case studies from Ken Shaw

The Edinburgh Guarantee

Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Shortlisted project

The Edinburgh Guarantee

Edinburgh has inspired cultural change across the public, private and third sectors to address unemployment among school leavers. A shared vision and strong partnerships are helping them find a job, modern apprenticeship or training, and make successful transitions into the world of work. more