A working paper that collates the discussions and outcomes from a two-day forum involving members of third sector interfaces and Voluntary Action Scotland on the future of community planning. 


In December 2014, third sector interface representatives gathered for a two-day forum to review evidence and deliberate on the future of community planning (CP). They started by outlining broad ideas, values and principles to guide their deliberations, and agreed that the overarching aim is to achieve ‘better outcomes, better lives’, with particular focus on tackling inequalities. Forum participants then mapped problems and barriers that stand in the way.

On the basis of that work, they then generated 17 vision statements around four themes:

  1. Developing a new role for CP in local democracy
  2. Turning CP into a space for collaborative and participative decision-making
  3. Improving how CP works
  4. Developing a new role for the third sector in CP

The vision outlined in the document offers a bold approach for reimagining CP as an empowered space capable of developing better services and solving local problems through policy innovation. This is a collective vision for ‘Democratic Community Planning’.

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Reimagining Community Planning in Scotland: A Vision from the Third Sector (PDF)

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Author: Written by Oliver Escobar on behalf of members of third sector interfaces and Voluntary Action Scotland.

Date of publication: August 2015

Publication type: Working paper