A strategy for social enterprise – update October 2005

A strategy for social enterprise


Social economy unit

Communities Scotland






At the Voluntary Sector and Social Economy Debate in the Scottish Parliament on 19 May 2005, Scottish Ministers committed to developing a differentiated strategy for social enterprise in Scotland.  The strategy will link to Scottish Executive commitments to deliver better public services and grow Scotland’s economy.  It will also link to the Executive’s vision for the voluntary sector and the wider social economy.


The strategy will set out what is meant by social enterprise and explore the work undertaken by the sector.  It will highlight why such enterprises require a differentiated strategy.  The strategy will examine support for social enterprise and how the growth and development of social enterprises can be encouraged.  The strategy would also include an action plan and timetable for implementation.


The strategy will be produced by a cross-departmental working group consisting of officials from Development Department, Enterprise, Transport and Lifelong Learning Department, Communities Scotland, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.  The Social Economy Unit at Communities Scotland will project manage the consultation process and delivery of the strategy.  The working group will link closely to the Social Economy Advisory Board to be chaired by Deputy Minister for Communities, Johann Lamont.


It will be crucial to the success of the strategy to involve a wide range of social enterprises, organisations supporting social enterprise and public agencies. We will also organise a number of workshops and other events to discuss key issues during the process.  This will commence with workshops at the Liam Black, ‘No Business like Social Business’ Masterclass on 7 November.  Members of the Communities Scotland project team will also have a series of one-to-one meetings with stakeholders as part of the process and a survey will be undertaken of views on the issues to be addressed in the strategy.


Initial consultation, discussion and early drafting of the strategy will take place in Autumn 2005.  A number of related research studies report in early 2006 and these will then feed into the strategy with a draft strategy being available in March 2006.  It is intended that the final strategy will be published in June 2006.


We welcome any comments on development of the strategy.  These can be sent to Roddy Macdonald, Head of Social Economy Unit, Communities Scotland, Thistle House, 91 Haymarket Terrace, Edinburgh EH12 5HE or by email to roddy.macdonald@communitiesscotland.gsi.gov.uk.