Category Archives: 11 Better commissioning

Have your say! Action to boost support for civil society and cut council red tape

The Department of Communities and Local Government is consulting on new Best Value guidance, which sets out some reasonable expectations on the way best value authorities (which include local authorities) should work with voluntary and community groups when facing difficult funding decisions. Under the duty of best value, the guidance says that authorities should consider overall value, including [...]

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Consultation: revised waste framework directive

Defra has launched a consultation on how to implement the revised EU Waste Framework Directive in England and Wales, and your views are being sought. The Directive will bring together new and existing measures to promote waste prevention, recycling, and better use of resources while protecting human health and the environment. The consultation includes proposals [...]

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Help “grow your own” local services

The Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) is funded by the European Union (EU) and the Government to support a wide range of activitites in rural areas. The Community And Social Enterprise fund is a £7m funding stream within the RDPE to support voluntary and community organisations to become more self-financing and sustainable through the [...]

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Plunkett Foundation to review rural social enterprises

Defra and the Office for Civil Society have commissioned the Plunkett Foundation to review the economic, social and environmental impacts of rural social enterprise in England. The research and development project will collect evidence on the contributions made by social enterprises to rural communities.  It will be used to inform the understanding of Defra and [...]

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Goodbye and good luck Simon!

Many of you will have come to know Simon Berry, leader of Defra’s Third Sector Team, through this blog over the last year and a bit. Well all good things must come to end and, sadly for us, Simon is leaving Defra to pursue an exciting new challenge. Simon joined Defra in October 2008 on [...]

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‘The Moment for Mutualism’ published

HM Government today announced the publication of a new report entitled ‘the Moment for Mutualism’. The report recognises that over the past two years confidence in some of the longstanding financial institutions has been significantly undermined and there is widespread feeling that organisations and leaders have lost touch with the people they serve.  People want more control and not [...]

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New business opportunities in waste and resource management.

On 16 March Hilary Benn announced a new report, entitled “Less is More: Business Opportunities in Waste and Resource Management’.  The report can be downloaded from Defra’s waste and recycling pages.  The report has been produced  jointly between Defra and the Department for Business working with the waste management sector and industry more widely. The [...]

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How do you want the future to look?

Here is a prime opportunity for those of you who want to tell Defra what it should be doing on the environment and sustainable development, homes, shopping and eating, travel and business – you are invited to join the ‘Greener Society’ debate and share your views on what a greener future might look like. Click here to [...]

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Joint Ministerial and third sector taskforce report launched

Following on from this post, the report on the joint Ministerial and Third Sector Task Force on Climate Change, the Environment and Sustainable Development was formally launched at an event at the the Commonwealth Club this evening (9/3/10).  The event was chaired by Stephen Hale of Green Alliance and featured updates from members of the Task Force, [...]

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Mass localism – NESTA discussion paper

This discussion paper was launched today (23/2/10) and takes the lessons from NESTA’s Big Green Challenge and suggests 5 lessons that policymakers should use in developing programmes that impact on and involve local communities. The five principles were: Establish clear measureable outcomes; Presume community capacity to innovate; In the early stages, challenge and advice is more useful than cash; [...]

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