Policy Context

There is now a greater need than ever to use public expenditure in ways that achieve outcomes. Too much expenditure is devoted to dealing with the negative consequences of past interventions that have failed to achieve outcomes or to reach the right people.

Targeting expenditure narrowly on such interventions is running up a down escalator. It will achieve worse results than working in ways that motivate people and the communities they live in to contribute positively to achieving outcomes.

The Independent Budget Review for the Scottish Government identified themes essential to a ‘strategic, longer-term framework and direction of travel’, including:

  • sustaining the individual in the community
  • enabling self-help and close support
  • self-directed support and personal choice
  • preventive measures and early intervention
  • integrated service provision focused on the individual
  • shaping organisational boundaries to help, not hinder, service delivery
  • realising the resource represented by increasing numbers of older, active and
  • available members of society
  • underpinning and realising the vital role of the voluntary/third sector.

Community learning and development can make a vital contribution to all of these.


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