Community Wealth Building to Bolster Economy

Community Wealth Building to Bolster Economy Image

Work to bolster the Dundee economy and support local jobs under the Community Wealth Building (CWB) approach is to be discussed by councillors.

They will be told that efforts to encourage local contractor spend in capital programmes also resulted in over £24 million subcontract activity being spent locally.

The Centre for Local Economic Strategies worked with the council in 2021 to develop an action plan for CWB.

It was explained at that time: "Ultimately community wealth building in Dundee is about ensuring that the city develops an approach to economic development which tackles directly the challenge of climate change as well as the underlying social challenges that continue to limit the life chances of residents including long term unemployment, deprivation and child poverty.”

A progress report to the City Governance Committee on Monday June 24 will outline how CWB principles are being integrated into key strategies in the current Dundee Council Plan and City Plan for Dundee.

It details how a local spend monitoring system is now in place which shows levels for Dundee City at 39%, Tayside and Fife (58%) and Scotland (81%) in the year 2022/23.

A Dundee CWB Procurement Working Group has been established, pulling together procurement managers from anchor partners. The key focus will be on local spend, community benefits, fair work and climate action in procurement.

Work to encourage local firms to bid for public sector tenders included a Meet the Buyer Tayside event this February, with 545 registrations and 332 individuals attending from 199 different Scottish Companies. Eighty-six% of respondents indicated it would make them more likely to bid after attending, with 82% feeling more capable of bidding after attending.

City Governance Convener Councillor John Alexander said: “Community Wealth Building focuses on local people and supporting local business to compete for work, to drive wealth back into the community, and puts control and all of the advantages firmly into the hands of local people.

“Dundee partners have made good progress so far, as can be seen by the success of our Living Wage campaign.

“But there is still much more we can all do to take forward this new framework to ensure that local economic development can have the maximum impact on communities and people's lives.”

Council Fair Work, Economic Growth and Infrastructure Convener Councillor Steven Rome added: “This is about making the city a better place for everyone by helping to increase opportunities, reduce unemployment and address issues like deprivation and poverty, as well as the climate emergency.”

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