The Cross-Party Group on Social Enterprise in The Scottish Parliament is Scotland’s social enterprise policy forum. You can now see the agenda and report from the 4th meeting below.
You can see details of the Purpose of the group, MSP involvement and the external member list etc. on The Scottish Parliament website here.
What are Cross-Party Groups in The Scottish Parliament? Cross-Party Groups (CPGs) provide an opportunity for Members of all parties, outside organisations and members of the public to meet and discuss a shared interest in a particular cause or subject.
4th meeting of Scotland’s Cross-Party Group on Social Enterprise in The Scottish Parliament
Scotland’s policy forum for social enterprise
Tuesday 25 September 2012, 13:15 – 14:45
(external guests please arrive at 13:00 at the latest to get through security)
Committee Room 3, The Scottish Parliament
After a vote of group members the theme of this meeting is the new Procurement Reform Bill, that comes with the announcement of the Bill in The Scottish Government Programme for the new parliamentary session. This new Bill is a unique opportunity to influence and shape public procurement reform in Scotland – so make your voice heard.
Pauline Graham, CEO of Social Firms Scotland, who is leading on the Bill for our sector and Duncan Osler of MacRoberts LLP, a specialist in Public Procurement Law, will join us for the debate, plus a Scottish Government procurement speaker.
“The Bill will establish a national legislative framework for sustainable public procurement that supports Scotland’s economic growth by delivering community benefits, supporting innovation, considering environmental requirements and promoting public procurement processes and systems which are transparent, streamlined, standardised, proportionate, fair and business-friendly.” Source: The Scottish Government.
13:00 Arrival at The Scottish Parliament (external guests please arrive at 13:00 at the latest to get through security and to be taken to the relevant room. Please note new later start time due to parliamentary business).
13:15 Networking and light lunch.
13:30 Introduction by CPG Convener, Chic Brodie MSP.
13:35 An update from Bob Giulianotti of Firstport, on next steps about the report from the last meeting “Business support for social enterprise”.
13:40 Presentations by each of the speakers: Pauline Graham, CEO of Social Firms Scotland, who is leading on the new Bill for our sector, Duncan Osler of MacRoberts LLP, a specialist in Public Procurement Law, alongside a Scottish Government procurement spokesperson.
14:00 Discussion with speakers and group members.
14:45 Meeting ends.
If you need a contact or information after the event please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chic Brodie MSP (Scottish National Party) – Convener
Patrick Harvie MSP (Scottish Greens) – Vice Convener
Gavin Brown MSP (Scottish Conservatives)
John Park MSP (Scottish Labour)
Tavish Scott MSP (Scottish Liberal Democrats)
Report from 4th Cross-Party Group on Social Enterprise in The Scottish Parliament meeting.
The theme of this meeting was “The new Procurement Reform Bill”. The report below summarises the main points of the discussion.
Tuesday 25 September 2012
Chaired By Chic Brodie MSP
1 An update from Bob Giulianotti of Firstport, on next steps about the report from the last meeting “Business support for social enterprise”. Points arising:
Dodie Piddock (BRAG Enterprises): Business mentoring etc. an issue. Does The Scottish Government measure the impact of business support?
Bob Giulianotti (Firstport): Just Enterprise has a robust evaluation of work.
Pauline Graham: An issue is who/where are social enterprises in Scotland? And what is their impact? A gap that we hope to fill by forthcoming research. We also have the resource of the Ready for Business Register. Also, where is public sector spend going on social enterprise?
2 Presentations by each of the speakers: Pauline Graham, CEO of Social Firms Scotland, who is leading on the new Procurement Reform Bill for our sector, Duncan Osler of MacRoberts LLP, a specialist in Public Procurement Law, alongside The Scottish Government procurement speaker, Bill Watt. Questions and a debate with the group followed the presentations:
Pauline Graham (CEO of Social Firms Scotland): We are on the reform group for procurement. There is still lots to do but we are in a better place than we were in 2006. Not all sorted but better. Good supplier engagement now. We need more information about economic and social impact. We need transparency in public sector decision making. Community Benefit clauses and the scale of social enterprises regarding aggregation. Not enough social enterprises registered on Public Contracts Scotland. Name of the Bill should be changed back to Sustainable Procurement! Social and environmental clauses vital but not appropriate for every contract. Public sector needs sustainable procurement training.
Bill Watt (The Scottish Government): Procurement must be outcomes based. We have done much to reform already but we can certainly do more. We need easy and consistent access to public sector contracts. (Bill went on to explain in detail the various strands of the public consultation).
Duncan Osler (MacRoberts LLP): The procurement reform agenda is very important, particularly in terms of the economic impact. The European context and reform of the European directive. Lowest cost not lowest price may be in the new reforms – a long-term life cycle view. The system needs to be effective, transparent and simple. The opportunity is for social enterprises to feed into the social impact agenda.
Chic Brodie MSP: There are big opportunities for social enterprise to feed into the regeneration agenda, other opportunities with litter strategy for 2014.
Gerry Higgins (CeiS): Is there a relationship with the Social Value Bill in England?
Jo Mitchell (The Scottish Government): We’ve taken the best bits of that Bill but this Bill covers both good and services.
Chris Cook (Nordic Enterprise Trust): A ‘Guarantee Society’ idea, mutual guarantee. 1 idea that has mileage. Explained role in Perth social enterprise.
Steve McCreadie (Aberlour): Social care. ‘Price’ vs. ‘cost’ concepts and also grand ideas vs. competitive reality. Most tenders now looking at more for less. Ongoing TUPE issues. How do we engage with local authorities? Practical advice needed.
Duncan Osler (MacRoberts LLP): Health and social care will face full competition. Engage with commissioners now, don’t wait for reforms. The sector Ready for Business project focuses on engagement with all parties.
Bill Watt (The Scottish Government): Many of these issues are in the consultation so please do respond to it.
Chic Brodie MSP: Also important to note that the Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill is on the policy agenda.
Ailsa Clark (Inspiralba): Worked with range of social enterprises on growth, barriers and community benefits. Our work may be of interest on this topic. New Bill may be a good opportunity. We need a toolkit on sustainability.
Jo Mitchell (The Scottish Government): We have guidance about benefits of dealing with SMEs etc.
Fraser Kelly (CEO, Social Enterprise Scotland): Culture change and old mindsets in public agencies – will the new Bill cure this?
Pauline Graham (CEO of Social Firms Scotland): The Bill is a great thing. But it won’t change locally made buying decisions in each individual circumstance. Relationship with the bigger picture too – Community Planning reform and also the Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill.
Chic Brodie MSP: It’s the responsibility of MSPs to help with this. Including conversations with local Council leaders and Chief Executives.
Pauline Graham (CEO of Social Firms Scotland): There are alternatives to procurement. Don’t always use procurement rules – use Public Social Partnerships too.
Duncan Osler (MacRoberts LLP): Sustainable procurement is inevitable, it will happen. Senior people in local government get this.
Chic Brodie MSP: We need to evangelise and sell the message that this is win-win, that sustainable procurement is a good thing. And also social enterprises themselves should be doing things now – sharing risk and reward and working together. Feed in your views to the consultation now.
External organisation members
Social Enterprise Scotland
Social Firms Scotland
Social Investment Scotland
Centre of Health and Wellbeing
Buchan Dial-a-Community Bus/ DAB Plus c.i.c
Highlands & Islands Enterprise (HIE)
Alloa Community Enterprises
PlanB Money & Debt Advice Support Services
Health Inequalities Alliance Ltd
Association of British Credit Unions Limited (ABCUL)
Community Growing Solutions CiC
Co-operative Development Scotland
Kibble Education and Care Centre
Scottish Sports Association
Scottish Borders Social Enterprise Chamber
Development Trusts Association Scotland (DTAS)
Link Group Ltd