Innovation, Improvement, Impact

About us:

We are a social and economic development consultancy committed to improving lives, communities and economies.

For 10 years we have delivered research and development support to strengthen and improve the public sector, communities and businesses across the UK and Europe by helping them to:

  • Develop business cases;
  • Secure funding;
  • Design and deliver policy and projects; and
  • Monitor and evaluate their activities.

We deliver these services across a range of contexts with our expertise including:

  • Economic development and physical regeneration;
  • Business and enterprise;
  • Employment, learning and skills;
  • Growth sectors, including low carbon and digital tech;
  • Equalities and inclusion; and
  • Communities and the not-for-profit sector.

Our Services:

Designing and delivering policy and projects

We have a wealth of experience of supporting clients to deliver innovation in policy and projects. We provide objective and informed insights, alongside robust evidence and analysis and co-creation processes which help clients, end users and communities to share in the ownership and design of new approaches. Through this approach we have supported clients to develop, refine and deliver strategies, action plans, services and projects.

Monitoring and evaluation

We work with clients to enable them to demonstrate the difference they have made and provide intelligence to inform the continuous improvement of their operations and enhance impact and value for money. We are experts in developing and delivering innovative evaluations that clearly demonstrate the impact of activities for clients, funders and partners and add value to delivery.

Developing business cases

We work closely with clients to provide intelligence and insight to enable them to make informed investment decisions. The services we provide in this area range from market research to provide customer or end user insight to feasibility testing and the production of social and economic impact assessments. We are skilled at utilising a range of quantitative and qualitative research methods incorporating primary research and secondary data analysis and modelling. This is not simply about the analysis of data – we understand the need to develop compelling and reasoned cases for project and programme development.

Securing Funding

We help our clients to successfully secure funding through competitive processes within an increasingly challenging environment. We understand the requirements of funders and have a proven track record of developing bids on behalf of clients that have been successful in securing funding from a wide range of public sector, charitable and private sector sources. Services provided range from identifying opportunities to the delivery of complete funding or contract bids.

Examples of our clients and projects can be found here

of projects evaluated

of funding secured for clients

Our story:

Established in 2007 as a workers’ co-operative, Centrifuge is a collective of highly experienced consultants with many years’ experience in their field. Since our inception we have developed a reputation for excellence and innovation and have delivered projects across the UK and beyond. Centrifuge is supported by a range of associate consultants who provide specialist skills and experience to deliver specific projects. In line with our commitment to social engagement in the economic process, we engage with other social and community enterprises to assist in the delivery of our work, where necessary. Our core team includes:

Alastair Thomson

A highly experienced consultant with over 30 years’ experience in research and project management.  He has been involved in many different projects for a large number of clients from the European Commission to community groups.

Primary areas of expertise include:
  • Undertaking economic impact assessments, including infrastructure development and complex environmental projects;
  • Social return on investment appraisal, including health benefits;
  • Project development and design, including service design approaches and funding development, for example having recently put together a successful £12m Big Lottery/ESF bid for Warrington and Cheshire;
  • Strategic economic planning; and
  • Policy analysis.
Areas of interest:

Alastair is a member of the Institute of Economic Development and Economic Development Association Scotland and below are his areas of interest:

  • Economic development and physical regeneration
  • Business and enterprise; and
  • Growth sectors, including low carbon and digital tech.

Liam Marsh

Has over 14 years’ experience of social and economic research consultancy and has successfully delivery projects on behalf of clients across the UK and in Europe.

Primary areas of expertise include:
  • Driving continuous improvement through the design and delivery of monitoring and evaluation across a wide range of areas, including complex multi-partner projects;
  • Quantitative research, data analysis and modelling including the innovative use of key national datasets to inform policy and practice;
  • Design and delivery of consultation processes from business or not-for-profit sector surveys to workshops, web based and social media driven approaches and interviews; and
  • Partnership and organisational development.
Areas of interest:

Liam is a member of the UK Evaluation Society and his areas of interest include:

  • Employment, learning and skills;
  • Equalities and inclusion; and
  • Communities and the not-for-profit sector.

Clients & Partners:

Organisations, cooperatives and councils we are proud to work with at Centrifuge.


We have worked with an extensive range of organisations as clients or partners, with recent examples shown here:

Economic development and physical regeneration
  • Redcar Borough Council – Developing Economic Plans for Coastal Community Teams
  • Dumfries & Galloway Council – Scenario planning and economic impact assessments for physical regeneration
  • Northumberland Coast & Lowlands LEADER Programme – developing the 2014-2020 Local Development Strategy
  • North Denmark Regional Council – Consultant to the MICROPOL enterprise hub project
  • Southern Uplands Partnership – Appraisal of economic benefits of a proposed environmental project

Business and enterprise
  • North Tyneside Council – Made in North Tyneside ERDF Evaluation
  • Cumbria County Council – Cumbria Rural Growth Network Evaluation
  • Sunderland City Council – Evaluation of retail business support programme
  • Northumberland County Council – Expert advisor to business and enterprise focussed INTERREG IVC project
  • Cumbria LEADER Local Action Groups – Evaluation of Rural Skills Cumbria

Employment, learning and skills
  • Scarborough Borough Council – Employment & Skills Strategy development
  • New Leaf Partnership – ESF/BLF Building Better Opportunities Evaluation
  • Golden Gates Housing Trust – Development of a successful £10.7m BLF and ESF bid
  • Association of Colleges – Evaluation of Efficiency Improvement Fund, supporting shared services projects
  • York College – Evaluation of an ESF project
  • Creativity Culture and Education – Evaluation of wider impacts of Schools of Creativity Programme
  • Scottish Borders Council – Developing projects targeting young people not in employment, education and training
  • Livin Housing Association – Employment and skills feasibility study
  • Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park – Employment & Skills Partnership and strategy development

Growth sectors, including low carbon, digital and tech
  • Sunderland City Council – Evaluation of ERDF Low Carbon Social Housing Demonstrator Project
  • Tees Valley Unlimited (Local Enterprise Partnership) – Design and development of 2014-2020 ERDF Low Carbon SME projects
  • Dumfries & Galloway Council – Marine sector skills study
  • Newcastle City Council – Evaluation of The Core, an ERDF and RGF funded Science Central facility
  • Design Council – Evaluation of the Public Services by Design programme

Have a project you would like to discuss? Please get in touch!


A co-operative company:


The Core, Science Central, Bath Lane, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE4 5TF


4 North Court, Glasgow, G1 2DP

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