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This is an archived section of the Scottish Government website. External links, forms and search may not work on archived pages and content/contact details are likely to be out of date.

This page relates to the 2007 version of the National Performance Framework. Information about the current version of the NPF is available on the Scotland Performs Home Page.


Current Status

Between 2004/05 and 2009/10 total income received by Scottish households increased. Over this period the proportion of income received by those at the bottom of the income distribution has gradually but consistently been decreasing, suggesting that the distribution of income is becoming more unequal.

more information on household income



To increase overall income and the proportion of income earned by the three lowest income deciles as a group by 2017


Why is this Purpose target important?

The healthy development of our society depends on reducing inequalities and sharing the future benefits of growth among people and communities. Unlocking the economic potential of all individuals will support economic growth by increasing labour market participation and by removing the personal and social costs of poverty.

What will influence this Purpose target?

Income inequality is influenced by several factors, including:

  • Accessibility of employment opportunities, especially for those on lower incomes.
  • Opportunities for the lower-paid to improve their skills.
  • Changes in the income differential between the lowest and highest paid occupations.
  • Entitlement to, and take-up of, benefits.

What is the Government's role?

The Government influences solidarity in a number of ways. These include:

  • Learning, skills and well-being: a focus on giving every child a strong start in life, as well as in school education, enabling them to gain the skills they need to succeed.
  • Infrastructure development and place: a focus on investment that will improve Scottish transport connections to maximise employment opportunities.
  • Equity: providing the opportunities - and incentives - for all to contribute to Scotland's sustainable economic growth. For example, by ensuring that support is available to improve the life chances of those most at risk.
  • Effective government: to support local employability partnerships to help more people into work through delivery of effective services that meet their needs.

How are we performing?

Total income received by Scottish households increased every year from 1999 to 2009. Between 2008-09 and 2009-10 it increased from £76 billion to £77 billion (in 2009 prices).During this period the proportion of income received by those at the bottom of the income distribution remained broadly unchanged. Between 2004-05 and 2009-10 the proportion of income received by those in the bottom three deciles remained between 13% and 14% however has been slowly falling.

Proportion of total equivalised income going to the bottom three income deciles

Source: Department for Work and Pension's Family Resources Survey, Households Below Average Income datasets

View data on Solidarity

Real Gross Disposable Household Income - inflated by CPI (2009 prices)

Source: ONS Gross Disposable Household Income

View data on Solidarity


The evaluation is based on:

  • The position is improving if the share of income received by the lowest 3 deciles increases by 1 percentage point or more and the total income does not fall;
  • The position is worsening if the share of income received by the lowest 3 deciles falls by 1 percentage point or more or if total income falls;

The position is maintaining in any other case.

For information on general methodological approach, please click here.

Further Information

Scotland Performs Technical Note

Statistics Topic Page

View Purpose Target data

Downloadable document:

Data on the Solidarity Purpose TargetData on the Solidarity Purpose Target [XLS, 50.5 kb: 18 May 2011]
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