About the Centre for Excellence

The Community Wealth Building Centre for Excellence works to develop and accelerate the adoption of Community Wealth Building practice in the UK.


Our vision

Our vision is for Community Wealth Building to become the guiding principle of local economic development. This would result in local economies where wealth is held, owned and distributed more widely. We wish to see wealth harnessed for the benefit of local people, communities and places, those that created it.

In short, our aim is to reorganise local economies so that they truly work for local people and places.


What we do

The principles of Community Wealth Building are not theoretical, they are rooted in a set of practical, common sense and workable solutions. A key role for the Centre for Excellence is to inspire, support and evaluate this ongoing practice, so that the movement grows.

Our work focuses on three main areas.

1. Connecting community wealth builders

  • We connect people in the movement
  • We deepen work in different sectors by bringing people together on a sector basis
  • We combine the economic power of local anchor institutions to realise greater impact on the local economy

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2. Influencing policy

We inform strategic policy to accelerate action through:

  • Developing strategic policy drawing from best practice
  • Training policy makers and practitioners
  • Developing and disseminating resources

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3. Supporting individuals and organisations to build community wealth

We support individuals and organisations to become community wealth builders in their communities through:

  • Training and events
  • Resource toolkits
  • Tailored consultancy

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How does the Centre for Excellence work?

CLES has established the Centre for Excellence to support a diverse and growing movement of organisations in the UK and beyond. Collaboration is at the heart of our approach.

An advisory group guides the activities of the Centre for Excellence. The aim of the group is to:

  • Draw on expertise to support the development and deepening of community wealth building work
  • Provide insight on the national policy environment and guide positioning of the Centre
  • Advocate for community wealth building principles and practice in key sectors

Meet our advisory board.


How are we funded?

The Centre is funded through a combination of grants from independent funders, fees for training and consultancy and membership contributions.

Barrow Cadbury Trust is currently funding this programme of work.

>> Return to the Community Wealth Building Centre for Excellence home page.