This short animation explains what local wealth building is, why its time has come and how people can get involved.
For ten years I’ve worked with procurement practitioners in local government and other place-based institutions, helping them to shift their mindset and behaviour, so they don’t just think about cost and efficiency in procurement decisions but a whole range of wider factors, including effectiveness, quality and social value.
On the whole, procurement practice at the local level has changed for the better. Strategies consider social value and the challenges facing places, as well as more traditional considerations around cost and compliance.
This week CLES attended a big public buyers meeting in Brussels, organised by the European Commission’s DG Grow in collaboration with Eurocities.
The delegates and speakers were representatives of public buyers from large and capital cities from across the EU and the event highlighted learning from various projects, including:
What is Community Wealth Building, why is it important, and what has CLES been doing about it?
Over the past 10 years, CLES has amassed a body of work around Community Wealth Building and Anchor Organisations in Greater Manchester, Preston, Birmingham and 11 cities across Europe. This pioneering work is focused on building an economy where wealth – including the spend of local anchor organisations – is recirculated locally for the benefit of local communities.
The CLES Deputy Chief Executive, Matthew Jackson will be in Nagykallo, Hungary on Thursday 3rd August to discuss the city’s procurement strategy.
Nagykallo are partners in the Procure Network and are seeking Matthew’s support to develop a bespoke procurement strategy for the City. This will go beyond the existing emphasis upon cost being the primary component of procurement strategy and decision making to think through how procurement can be used in Nagykallo to address local economic, social and environmental challenges.
Historically Small to Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) have faced a range of barriers in accessing procurement opportunities and in winning contracts. These barriers include: contracting authorities being unaware of SMEs and the types of goods and services they can potentially provide; SMEs viewing the procurement process, often rightly, as overly bureaucratic; SMEs not having the capacity to bid for opportunities and compete with large business; and the process of procurement often being undertaken on the basis of cost thus ruling out the ability of SMEs to demonstrate their wider value.
Whilst these barriers still exist, the European Procurement Directives of 2014 have a specific focus on supporting SMEs to engage with procurement processes. There is a specific emphasis upon: contracting authorities simplifying the process of procurement; contracting authorities breaking opportunities down into smaller lots; and reducing the levels of turnover required to participate in tendering exercise. At the last meeting of the Procure network held in Koprivnica, Croatia in March 2017, we wanted to explore how the above principles were translating into reality at the city level and what activities could be undertaken by cities to more effectively engage SMEs and local organisations in procurement. Collectively we identified 10 key ways which relate to common barriers:
Manchester City Council (MCC) is playing a “pioneering role” by reinvesting spend back into the local economy through its progressive procurement policies, according to an independent think tank.
Manchester City Council is playing a ‘pioneering role’ in reinvesting spend back into the local economy with its progressive procurement policies, report says.
Around ten years ago, the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) started undertaking work around public procurement. Our interest in procurement was three-fold. First, we wanted to understand more effectively where procurement spend went and the impact in particular it had upon local economies. Second, we wanted to shift the behaviour of procurement officers so that a wider range of factors informed the procurement decision. Third, we wanted to influence the behaviour of suppliers so that they delivered greater benefits for local economies and people through the provision of goods and services.