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According to Pike, Marlow, McCarthy, O’Brien and Tomaney (2015: 85), ‘growing recognition< of the role of institutions in economic development is animating research interest across social science disciplines’. In line with the prioritisation of researching institutions in relation to economic development, this volume of Skills@Work has institutions as its central theme. Within this theme, there is a sense of the importance of considering institutionalised forms of regional and local economic development, the relationships between institutions and< economic development processes and the urgency for ‘getting things right’ in order to facilitate lasting positive change. But what are institutions? How do they work? Are there any specific characteristics of institutions, or of Regional and Local Economic Development (RLED), that should be considered when we think broadly about the inter-relationships between institutions and RLED concepts and practice? These are some of the questions inherent within the studies presented in this volume of Skills@Work.