We routinely publish economic data on the cities and their regions, which allows anyone to monitor progress and performance over time. We commit to broadening this with a range of additional social measures, to provide greater insight into inclusive growth. To do this, we will look to models like Understanding Glasgow.
We will continue to work with the Scottish Cities Knowledge Centre, in its new incarnation within Policy Scotland, as well as academia more generally, to:
- help understand the emerging global trends that impact on cities
- evaluate programmes and projects
- facilitate knowledge exchange and innovation, recognising that robust economic and social research remains vital to ensuring the best use of resources
Our cities' approach to open data will increasingly allow more detail to be shared and we will seek to find ways to use this to chart progress.
While it is often difficult to be clear on cause and effect when many actions combine to deliver an outcome, the following table shows that Scotland's cities have performed strongly in the past few years.
Change in Scotland's Cities' Performance 
|Indicator||Cities 2011||Cities Latest ||Cities Change||Cities % Change||Scotland % Change|
|Number of businesses||82,800||93,365||10,565||12.8%||10.3%|
|Private sector jobs||1,086,100||1,178,000||91,900||8.5%||7.3%|
|Gross value added (£million)||73,477||82,812||9,335||12.7%||12.0%|
In 2011, we said that the Scottish Cities Alliance should monitor the direct impact of its collaborative activity in relation to:
- increased investment
- business growth
- job creation
In investment terms, 2015 was the Alliance's most successful year yet. Its promotional activity made a significant contribution to securing a £30 million private sector investment in Perth. All the indications are that this return on investment will continue to rise as the Alliance's promotional activity bears fruit, with more investments secured and jobs created.