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Thursday, 17 August 2017

EDAS Events and CPD Courses Autumn 2017 - Book Today to Avoid Disappointment!

EDAS is offering its members and the wider economic development community a diverse series of events and CPD courses this Autumn. 

See below for full information about our upcoming programme, and book your place today to avoid disappointment! 
If you want to receive information about EDAS events direct to your inbox, you can sign up to our newsletter here

Thriving in the Future Global Trade Environment
Friday 8 September 
9:00 - 12:30

English Devolution, Economic Development and Industrial Strategy: Lessons for Scotland
Tuesday 26 September 2017
14:00 - 16:15

Monitoring and Evaluation: Achieving Better Value for Money and Innovating from Experience
Tuesday 3 October 2017
9:00 – 16:30

Introduction to Economic Development
Wednesday 25 -Thursday 26 October 2017
9:00 – 16:30

Update on Policy and Practice in Economic Development
Friday 1 December 2017
9:00 – 16:30

EDAS / SLAED Conference 2017
Thursday 2 November 
Perth Concert Hall 

The Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2017 - Shortlist Announced

Fraser Kelly, Chief Executive, Social Enterprise Scotland, said:

"We're delighted to announce the shortlist for the awards. We received around fifty applications of a very high standard and we look forward to submitting the shortlist to our independent judging panel. Social enterprises in every corner of Scotland are building a better economy and a fairer society. The Social Enterprise Awards Scotland is a unique opportunity for social enterprises to gain serious recognition for their achievements and dramatically raise their public profile."

To request a social enterprise news feature of any length for print, for further information or to arrange an interview about the awards, please contact: Fraser Kelly on 0131 243 2650 or

Awards media partners for 2017 are: Media Co-op, MeToo! magazine, Moving Arts Scotland and The Ferret.

More information: Social Enterprise Awards Scotland

Friday, 11 August 2017

Inclusive and Sustainable Growth: Making our Economy Work for Everyone

Lively debate and a multitude of themes were discussed at this joint CRSN and RSA event, including quality of jobs, diversity, productivity and devolution.
If there was ever an indication of the breadth of the Inclusive Growth agenda, the SBI’s Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Network (CRSN) event on 15 June said it all. The event was in collaboration with the RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce), and in the wake of the publication of their Inclusive Growth Commission findings.
It was a pleasure to welcome thinkers, disrupters and business people working and leading the way in this space. After hearing about the Commission and findings, delivered by Atif Shafique (leading researcher for the Inclusive Growth Commission, RSA), the panel members took their positions. We were delighted to host Sheila Fazal (Director, PwC), Dr Sarah Ivory (Early Career Fellow – Climate Change and Business Strategy, University of Edinburgh Business School) and Chris Oswald, (Head of Policy and Communications, Equalities and Human Rights Commission).
The lively debate ranged over quality of jobs, low carbon, diversity, city and non-city challenges, productivity, place, automation, infrastructure, land, social structures and devolution. The topics relevant to inclusive growth came thick and fast as chair Ross Martin strove to capture as much comment as possible from a great audience.
Any one of the themes could have absorbed an independent event, but some recurring ideas emerged:
  • Firstly, the evident complexity of the inclusive growth agenda. Neither reducible to soundbites nor the ‘one thing’ which the media demand – this is about system change. So achieving the depth of understanding needed means taking the ideas to wider audiences – not all of whom may agree.
  • Secondly, notwithstanding PwC’s support of the IG Commission’s work, the recognition that business has not, thus far, been sufficiently inspired to engage. Yet if real progress is to be made, this is a prerequisite. “Where is the discussion on jobs and internationalisation?”, queried Liz McAreavey, CEO of the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce.
  • Thirdly, differing interpretations and definitions of growth. Not just of what ‘growth’ could or should mean but long-held assumptions about competition, economic success and measuring progress; all came under the spotlight.
IG is nothing if not going back to fundamentals of the purpose of an economy.
Closing the event, the Chair reflected that whatever else, there seemed to be a powerful conviction that there has to be a ‘better way’. Considering the energy in the room, the conversation seems set to continue, with a role in particular for business to help articulate tangible actions. The vibrant conversation continued over a drinks reception which was enjoyed by all.

Find out more about the Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Network Visit the CRSN page »

Learn more about the RSA
Visit the RSA’s website »

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Applications Now Open for the 2017 IED Annual Awards

The Institute for Economic Development is now accepting applications for the 2017 awards for best practice.

It is a great opportunity to showcase the achievements of your organisation, raise your profile and standing in the economic development community and gain publicity through the Institute’s own PR mechanisms including an announcement at Conference, press releases and sharing of all best practice in an end of Awards economic development manual.

The awards are open to all corporate members whether in large or small / public or private organisations and open to all types of projects large or small.

Awards categories are:

Impact. Greatest economic impact – an award which recognises how economic fortunes have changed as a result of a project with impressive economic outcomes.

Innovation. Most innovative strategy – an award celebrating those strategies which dealt with an evidence based issue in what the judges regard as the most innovative manner.

Implementation. Best implementation – an award which recognises those projects where a strategy has been put in place and executed particularly efficiently and effectively.

Sustainability. Most sustainable outcome – this award will consider sustainability in terms of financial outcome (ie self-financing / cost reducing), social or environmental outcome. Clearly the more sustainable features the better.

The application will then be automatically included in the following three awards:

▪ Best small firm of the year in economic development (up to 25 staff)
▪ Best medium sized firm of the year (25-100 staff)
▪ Best large firm of the year in economic development

We are looking forward to receiving a high quality of applications which must be submitted before 30th September 2017. Interested organisations from the public and private sector alike can apply and the details can be accessed by clicking here.

Digital Society 2017 Conference: Digital solutions to reducing poverty and tackling inequality in Scotland

Digital Society 2017 is a half day event focusing on reducing poverty & inequality in Scotland through digital innovation.

The Scottish Government's digital strategy, Realising Scotland's full potential in a digital world: A Digital Strategy for Scotland has highlighted the importance of technology in improving our society as a whole. This conference will bring together tech gurus with social policy experts to share knowledge, ideas and resources to generate new innovative approaches towards realising this goal.

Poverty remains Scotland's biggest social issue and digital technology is widening the inequality gap. Carnegie Trust UK reported that more than 1 million Scots have been left behind in the digital revolution. Digital exclusion can lead to social exclusion, poor educational attainment and lower levels of skills having a severe impact on our society and economy.
It is time to make a change. Advacment in digital technology is an opportunity to tackle poverty head on. Digital Society 2017 aims to faciliate this discussion and provide an opportunity for cross sector networking.
Join in the discussion online: #DigitalSociety2017


Featured speakers include:

  • Naomi Eisenstadt- Independent Poverty Adviser to the Scottish Government
  • Ewan Aitken - CEO, Cyrenians
  • Maggie Morrison - Vice President Public Sector, CGI Scotland
  • David McNeill - Digital Director, SCVO
  • Nilufar Anwar - Non-executive director, #techmums
  • Douglas White - Head of Advocacy, Carneigie Trust UK
  • Gillian Docherty - CEO, The Data Lab
  • Peter McColl - Head of Policy, Scotland, Nesta
  • Elaine Melrose - Group Director of Resources, Wheatley Group
  • Craig Steele - Digital Skills Specialist & Leader, CoderDojo, Scotland
  • Bella Combest - COO & Head of Community, Street Change UK
Why attend:
With the continued integration of technology into our everyday lives #DigitalSociety2017 will be a unique opportunity for the public, third and private sectors to come together to discuss how digital innovation can be used to create social change.
Digital Society 2017 will discuss:
• Reducing Scotland’s digital divide;
• Creating social change through digital innovation;
• Up - skilling the nation to create a strong digital economy; and
• Using Big Data to tackle complex social issues.
We want you to join in the conversation!
FutureScot has created a space on the website for speakers, delegates and interested parties to discuss how digital innovation can be used to create a fairer, more equal society.

If you would like to make a contribution please get in contact with Aileen O'Hagan on
If you have any questions, please email or check out the website for more information.
Source: Eventbrite

Scotland’s Alliance for Action Regeneration Programme Expanded

SURF - Further investment by the Scottish Government and other key partners, means that SURF will be expanding its highly successful Alliance for Action programme over the course of 17/18.

Work is already underway towards the introduction of three new sites of cross sector collaboration, in addition to the three existing ones in Govan, East Kirkcaldy and Rothesay.

A Dunoon initiative is in active development. A Langholm focused feasibility study will take place in the autumn and discussions are scheduled for exploring a Dundee option. An outline of the purpose, process and anticipated outcomes is available at this link.

That summary also mentions two new complementary SURF projects; our Index of Multiple Assets and Aspirations and our People and Sector Connector service, which will link regeneration colleagues from all over Scotland with the learning and practical realities of connecting places, people, policy, processes and resources.

For further information on the Alliance for Action programme click HERE

Source: SURF

Monday, 24 July 2017

Edinburgh and South-East Scotland City Deal Investment Announced

BBC News - Edinburgh and south-east Scotland are to receive a multi-million pound boost after the latest City Deal was agreed.

The UK and Scottish governments are each investing £300m in the project.

The money will be used to support innovation, infrastructure, housing, tourism and culture including a new concert hall in St Andrew Square.

Contributions from councils and universities are expected to take the total investment in the deal to about £1bn.

The money will support the creation of five new innovation hubs, including in robotics and space technologies.

Investments at Heriot-Watt, Queen Margaret and Edinburgh Universities are envisaged.

'Ahead of the game'

The Edinburgh and South East of Scotland City Region Deal was due to be announced at the end of March but was delayed by the elections.

City of Edinburgh Council leader Adam McVey, said: "I am delighted that this ambitious deal for the region has now been agreed, creating up to 21,000 new jobs.

"This will allow us to transform the area delivering high-quality jobs, housing, critical infrastructure, a new skills programme, and a world-class concert hall.

"The significant investment in innovation and culture is also to be welcomed as they are both hugely important to the region's economy. This will put us at the forefront of data-driven innovation ensuring we are ahead of the game in a technology driven world."

Shona Haslam, Scottish Borders Council leader, said: "This is excellent news for the Scottish Borders. We will not only benefit from specific funding but also from a stronger and more vibrant city region.

"For the Borders specifically, this deal will enable us to maximise the delivery of affordable housing, stimulate private sector investment and support local jobs, and will be a further step towards ensuring that our young people can see a future for themselves within the Scottish Borders. Key to this is the promotion of inclusive growth.

"A focus for us will be driving forward the development of the Central Borders Business Park in Tweedbank."

David Ross, co-leader of Fife Council, said: "This deal is a step forward in creating more jobs in Fife, helping our residents access more employment opportunities, as well as increase housing availability, and unlock economic opportunity.

"The deal announced today falls short of what we were looking for to accelerate growth and ensure that the benefits of that growth are distributed more equally across the region, but it is a significant step in the right direction."

'Ambitious deal'

Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell said the deal would have a major economic impact on the region.

He said: "The UK government is investing £300m in the Edinburgh and South East of Scotland City Region Deal, which will boost the economy of Edinburgh and the whole of south east Scotland for decades to come.

"The Edinburgh deal will focus on the capital's strengths of new technology, innovation and culture. 

It will make a real difference to the lives of people in the region, creating jobs and prosperity and driving investment."

The Scottish government's economy secretary Keith Brown said: "I am very pleased that we have been able to get to the stage of achieving such an ambitious deal for the region.

"Edinburgh and its city region is an area of huge importance to the Scottish economy. It contains over a quarter of Scotland's population and contributes £33bn to the Scottish and UK economies."

He said the Scottish government would invest up to £25m in the region's workforce to reduce skills shortages and gaps and had committed £140m to transport projects, including £120m for improvements to the A720, Edinburgh City bypass and £20m for improvements at west Edinburgh. 

He also said the government would invest £65m in new housing.

"We will also be investing in innovation and that will focus on ensuring businesses and communities across the region can benefit from opportunities through world-class business infrastructure," he said.

'Fulfilling ambitions'

He added that the Scottish government recognised that festivals were a crucial part of the culture and economy of Scotland so it was also investing £10m towards a new concert venue.

"We will reinforce Edinburgh's reputation as a leading centre for music and the performing arts through investing in the proposed Impact project, working with existing philanthropic and commercial partners to deliver a new world-class performance venue in the heart of Edinburgh, and a new home for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra," he said.

"Taken together these projects will help the region continue to thrive and grow, fulfilling our ambitions for the region to be one of the fairest and most inclusive areas in the country."

Gordon Henderson, the Federation of Small Businesses senior development manager, said: "Two years of hard work by a great many local government staff and politicians, past and present, has gone into getting this deal signed - congratulations to them all.

"It is absolutely vital that business owners in Peebles, Bathgate, Glenrothes and Dunbar feel the benefit of the deal's huge spending power as much as those in central Edinburgh to ensure the regional economy as a whole benefits."

John Donnelly, chief executive of Marketing Edinburgh, said: "This is an incredibly important and exciting milestone for the city, the ambitious £1.1bn injection of funding will help extend our reputation as a global centre for culture, innovation and technology.

"There's no doubt that this deal will have a tremendously positive impact on the city's economy, it will enable us to remain competitive and reinforce our reputation as a world-class leader in arts, research and industry."

The regional bid involved six councils - City of Edinburgh, East Lothian, Fife, Midlothian, Scottish Borders and West Lothian.

It is the fourth UK City Deal in Scotland, following investments in Glasgow, Inverness, and Aberdeen.

Source: BBC News