A new blog on the What Works Scotland website highlights the opportunities for stimulating and supporting social enterprise and so plug the leaking of public funding out of a community.
Written by Jez Hall of PB Partners, the blog identifies the relationship between participatory budgeting and the recommendations of the Christie Commission, a report in 2011 that championed community engagement, better commissioning and prevention as the solution to growing demands on public services at a time of fiscal austerity.
In an extract from the blog Jez Hall says:
"Hundreds of PB projects have already spent millions of pounds across the UK. We know the format works… the challenge is scaling up and sustaining them.
Localising funding decisions is good for all. Good commissioning is all about connecting local knowledge with technical expertise and political will… to unlock public investment. Creating in its wake new opportunities for co-production. Procuring the right services, at the right scale, without it being siphoned off by the private sector makes sense.
Tapping into skills and resources within the community is another sensible strategy. Seeking bottom up solutions rather than top down interventions saves money down the line. And when citizens start to get involved in decision making locally they gain the skills and confidence to engage with big commissioning processes too."
- The full blog is available on the What Works website