This section brings together policy documents which are of interest to rural social enterprises. Each of these documents have been summarised to provide a clear and concise overview of the policy or strategy.
As this section develops, we hope that you will highlight and share those that you find most useful in making the case for rural social enterprise. You can submit documents to be included here.
Policy Implications of Coronavirus Crisis for Rural Development
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
This policy note examines the policy implications of the coronavirus crisis for rural development, and considers the policy responses that OECD member countries are adopting, using national examples to highlight good practice. The note also summarises how governments can prepare to leverage opportunities, and highlights the key opportunities and challenges.
Rural 3.0. People-Centered Rural Policy: Policy Highlights 2019
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
Described as a ‘road-map for delivering wellbeing in rural regions’, this policy framework aims to help national governments support rural development. It highlights the contribution that rural areas make to OECD economies, as well as the current challenges.
Social Enterprise World Forum
Online Policy Library
The Social Enterprise World Forum website hosts a resource library, which allows you to easily navigate through local, regional, national, and international examples of social enterprise policy. This library is the one of the most extensive online collections of social enterprise resources globally, and the collection is always expanding and being updated.
Advancing Social Enterprise in Nova Scotia
Outlines the regional strategy for advancing social enterprise in Nova Scotia, a province in the Canadian Maritimes. The strategy builds from the Scottish Social Enterprise Survey, highlighting the fact that ‘progress is most pronounced in remote rural and island communities’, of which there are many across Nova Scotia.
Social Enterprise Strategy: Victoria State Government
Outlines the social enterprise strategy for the state of Victoria, in south-eastern Australia. The strategy recognises a specific role for social enterprise in rural areas, especially as community-driven responses to local issues.
The Way Forward: Social Action Plan
Regional Strategy for Newfoundland and Labrador
This action plan sets out the focus for developing social enterprise in Newfoundland and Labrador from 2018-2021. References to rural social enterprise are limited, although it does commit to use research to understand the social enterprise sector, and identify and support new social enterprise opportunities in both urban and rural areas.
EU Rural Review 32
Long-term Vision for rural areas
This edition of the EU Rural Review looks at the future of rural areas in digital, environmental and social terms, as well as in terms of resilience. The content builds on the outcomes of the ENRD work on the Long-Term Rural Vision and of Rural Vision Week.
This section highlights policy in Scotland. Links are provided to the detail on the different policy documents. The focus here is on their relevance to rural social enterprise.
A new blueprint for Scotland’s rural economy: Recommendations to Scottish Ministers
National Council of Rural Advisors
This report produced in September 2018 calls for the strategic importance of the rural economy to be mainstream in all policy and decision making processes.
“We believe the rural economy is one of Scotland’s greatest assets. Our rural industries feed and fuel homes and businesses across the country. Our rural landscapes attract tourists from across the world. Our rural communities are brimming with creativity, resilience and entrepreneurial spirit. And according to the latest figures, our rural economy contributes over a quarter of the total value of the Scottish economy – £34.6bn in 2015, which was almost as much as Edinburgh and Glasgow combined (£38.1bn)”.
The recommendations are being implemented by the Rural Economy Action Group.
South of Scotland Draft Regional Economic Strategy
A draft of the first ever Regional Economic Strategy for the South of Scotland
Published in June 2021, this strategy has been created following extensive and far-reaching engagement earlier this year. This has helped the REP to set out their 10-year vision, built around six essential themes they believe will help create a greener, fairer and flourishing South of Scotland. One of these key themes is centred around building the capability and capacity of social enterprises and the Third Sector.
Social Enterprise Policy Framework
An Overview of Social Enterprise Policy Development in Scotland
This policy framework outlines the process for social enterprise policy development and implementation in Scotland, and points to resources that will provide further detail and information.
Building a Sustainable Social Enterprise Sector in Scotland
Action Plan 2017-20
This plan sets out the first steps to deliver the vision set out in the Social Enterprise Strategy, focusing on key priorities. This action plan may be subject to revision in the light of the Coronavirus pandemic, and its impact on the economy.
Scotland’s Social Enterprise Strategy 2016-2026
Published in 2016 this lays out the ten-year national strategy for social enterprise in Scotland setting out shared ambitions for the development of social enterprise in rural and urban areas across Scotland.
Community Empowerment and Engagement
National Performance Framework
The Big Picture
Scotland’s National Performance Framework (NPF) was developed with the people of Scotland. It reflects our values as a nation and our aspirations for the future. The NPF also incorporates Scotland’s commitment to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs aim to improve wellbeing across the world.
The illustration below tells the story of how the work done by the Scottish Government connects with people and places with the National Performance Framework at the centre.
Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015
This is a key piece of legislation that extended the community right to buy, already available to rural communities via the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003, to urban ones. It provides a framework for communities to have a greater say in the design and delivery of local services via participation requests and establishes the right to request the transfer of assets.
It allows different types of communities bodies to be involved in forestry leasing and requires local authorities to develop local food strategies. The Act establishes the National Outcomes in law and requires local authorities to establish Community Planning Partnerships and to involve local communities in all stages of community planning.
Community Wealth Building
Community Wealth Building in Rural & Island Scotland
Report from practitioner roundtable – December 2021
Organised by Scottish Rural Action, InspirAlba and the David Hume Institute, the roundtable brought together experienced practitioners to discuss rural and island wealth building strategies and to explore how wealth building policy, particularly the Preston model adopted by the Scottish Government may be leveraged to strengthen these strategies. This report summarises discussions for the Advisory Group on Scotland’s National Strategy for Economic Transformation.
The Scottish Rural Development Programme 2014-2020
The SRDP is part of the EU Common Agricultural Policy, and is funded by the European Commission and the Scottish Government. Its purpose is to help achieve sustainable economic growth in Scotland’s rural areas. The most familiar SRDP schemes to social enterprise are LEADER and the Forestry Grant Scheme.
The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016
The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016, placed a duty on Scottish Ministers to produce a statement of land rights and responsibilities, set up the Scottish Land Commission, and made provision for various changes to land ownership and management.
The Scottish Land Rights and Responsibilities Statement (LRRS) (September 2017) sets out six key principles and expectations for the relationship between people and land. It reflects changing expectations for the ways in which decisions about land are made. Together with the Scottish Government’s Guidance on Engaging Communities in Decisions about Land, it makes it clear that a wider range of voices should be able to influence and benefit from land use decisions.
- A commitment to create a framework that promotes, respects and fulfils human rights in relation to land.
- There should be a more diverse pattern of land ownership.
- There should be greater community ownership, leasing and use of buildings and land.
- Those that hold land rights and responsibilities to exercise them to meet high standards of land ownership, management and use.
- Improved transparency of information about ownership and use of land
- Greater collaboration and community engagement in decisions about land.