Social enterprises have long been established in Britain, providing a range of products and services whilst also delivering social value. The sector is now attracting more attention – largely driven by public spending constraints and the desire to find alternative ways to deliver local services.
As a sector, social enterprise is still emerging. It requires support and nurturing, particularly if social enterprises are to be equipped to take on new public sector contracts at significant scale.
The Supporting Local Social Enterprise action research project helped five local authorities to develop action plans to support their local social enterprise sector. The local authorities focused on seven key areas of development: leadership, commissioning and procurement, innovative finance, delivering public services, collaboration, business support and local innovation.
This report brings together information on the Supporting Local Social Enterprises action research project, case studies from the project, inspiration from other sources, key findings and information on the actions that were developed.