New study to establish the economic value of the Scottish screen sector

Screen Scotland has commissioned a full-scale economic impact study to assess the value of the Scottish screen sector, its sub-sectors and activities, and linkages to and influences on wider economic activity across Scotland.

Why are we commissioning this research?

There are a number of sources that provide valuable information and insights around Scotland’s screen sector. However, there are other areas of data that will help us better understand the full picture of economic impact across Screen Scotland’s remit.

The current data comes from a variety of sources that use different methodologies, making comparisons difficult. Additionally, ad-hoc studies do not provide consistent data over time.

It is important for Screen Scotland to establish a consistent method of data collection that can determine the full impact of the Scottish Government’s investment in the screen sector. The methodology should highlight the sector’s development and progress against targets, tracking back to a clear baseline.

What is the research about, and how will it be conducted?

Following a public procurement process, Screen Scotland has commissioned Saffery Champness and Nordicity to conduct a full-scale economic impact study to assess the value of the Scottish screen sector, its sub-sectors and activities across Scotland. The study will involve a programme of primary and secondary research, to be carried out between January 2021 and July 2021.

The intended outcomes of this work are:

  • A clear understanding of the value of Scotland’s screen sector to the Scottish economy, and where it currently sits within the UK context
  • Establishing the most effective methodological approaches to measuring growth in the Scottish screen sector.

The work will be developed in consultation with the wider screen sector and with the full support of Screen Scotland partners, involving the following screen sub-sectors:

  • Content Creation: Development, financing, production and post-production
  • Content Broadcast, Distribution and Exhibition
  • Talent and Skills, including Higher Education and Further Education
  • Screen Tourism
  • Infrastructure

The key research questions to be addressed are:

  • What are the direct, indirect, induced impact and spill over effects of the screen sector to the overall Scottish economy?
  • How is that felt across the industry’s value-chain?
  • How is this economic benefit felt differently across Scottish regions?
  • What are the existing methodologies for assessing the screen sector?
  • How can these be adjusted to better reflect the screen sector in Scotland?

How will the screen sector be involved?

Saffery and Nordicity will be regularly consulting with the industry over the next few months, holding interviews, surveys, and requesting data sharing. Information and support for getting involved will be shared across Screen Scotland’s website and social media.

Screen Scotland would like to encourage as many screen sector workers are possible to contribute to this research. The wider the range of input from sub-sectors, businesses and individuals in our industry, the stronger the findings will be.


If you have any questions about this research, please get in touch with:

Ana Moraes, Screen Research Officer

Email: [email protected]