A vibrant economy is one in which everyone benefits from economic growth and where the gap between the richest and poorest narrows and regional disparities reduce.
To measure this, the index explores a range of factors, from levels of deprivation and inequality to child poverty, housing affordability, employment rates and long-term unemployment, benefit claimants and homelessness.
The highest ranked places on this basket of measures are spread across Wales, with Monmouthshire, Vale of Glamorgan, Flintshire, Powys and Conwy ranking one to five respectively (see map 1). At the other end of the spectrum, a number of the Valley authorities in South Wales face significant challenges.
Map 1 - How areas of Wales perform against the Vibrant Economy Index inclusion and equality indicators
This basket of measures reveals that both highly urban and highly rural places face significant challenges in relation to inclusion and equality. While performance against the measures is similar, the underlying drivers are significantly different. For instance, in rural areas the issue of long-term unemployment is driven by a lack of job opportunities. In urban areas, however, while job opportunities abound, competition is higher.