Esrc policy forum Big Society and public procurement
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Esrc policy forum Big Society and public procurement Esrc policy forum Big Society and public procurement Presentation Transcript

  • Social Enterprise & Public Procurement
    Revd Timothy Curtis
    Senior Lecturer in Social Entrepreneurship
    University of Northampton
    HEFCE/Unltd Ambassador for Social Entrepreneurship in Higher Education
    Supported by
  • Brief
    What are the challenges for local government in policy, commissioning and procurement that make it harder for them to get the most out of social enterprises?
    ‘wickedness’ of the issue not addressed
    procurement is uni-directional & untrusting
    Needs to be ‘purposive’, ‘prosumed’ and ‘co-produced’.
    The University of Northampton
  • The ‘idealised’ model marketplace
    Social Enterprise is in here,
    The University of Northampton
  • Private Sector
    ~£1trillion GDP
    Lets get real…
    Public Sector
    ~£400billion revenue
    ‘monetised civil society’
    The University of Northampton
  • Publicly listed companies
    £12bn revenue
    380,000 employees
    80 countries
    8 client segments: Corporate, Health Care, Seniors, Education, Defense, Remote Sites, Justice and Sports & Leisure.
    6% operating margin
    £3.9billion revenue
    provide and operate two new prisons in the UK, at Belmarsh West, London, and Maghull, Liverpool, with a combined value to us of around £600m over 26½ years.
    formed a new partnership, GSTS 4 Pathology LLP, with the Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, to pursue opportunities in this substantial market, which is valued at approximately £2.5bn.
    signed three contracts under the UK Government’s Flexible New Deal initiative worth £400-500m
    Running schools and inspecting schools for Ofsted
    Social enterprises are just not competing with these publicly listed companies
    They are competing with SME & privately owned businesses
    The University of Northampton
  • Privately owned companies
    These are not known for their public contracting- except construction
    Note the complex mix of ownership types, inc EBT
  • SME’s
    There were an estimated 4.81 million private sector enterprises in the UK at the start of 2008
    Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) together accounted for 99.9 per cent of all enterprises, 59.4 per cent of private sector employment and 50.1 per cent of private sector turnover.
    Average turnover £215,000
    Therefore, rule bound procurement environment
    The University of Northampton
  • Not untypical LA expenditure
    The University of Northampton
    One local authority (A) reports a spend of £331m. The top 10 spending categories account for £226m (28% of the total spend)
    Curtis 2005
  • Progress in Procurement
    The way it was
    Non-transparent opportunities & leads
    Councils knew their budgets but not their spend (BEST Procurement)
    Incumbents had the advantage
    Lowest cost v best value
    Fragmented supply chains
    Grant/SLA/Short-term contracts
    Liability foisted on contractor
    The way it is
    The Compact
    OGC portal(s)
    Whole-life costing
    Consortia/supplychain development
    Full cost recovery
    Longer/larger contracts
    Customer more active in risk mgt
    The University of Northampton
  • The problems of procurement
    Rule bound but does not recognise social construction of contract development
    Justice Holmes commented one hundred and five years ago: "Nothing is more certain than that parties may be bound by a contract to things which neither of them intended, and when one does not know of the other's assent”
    Poor understanding of wickedness of social issues
    Poor understanding of the inefficiency of ‘overhead’ in providing services
    The value added by ‘good’ participants (like volunteers) is lost to the value calculation
    Requires and implies centralisation, professionalisation, risk avoidance and individualism (Young & Temple 2010)
    Perverse outcomes: cherrypicking of easy to reach targets, focus on contract terms rather than what is really going on, unstructured supply chains (NAO 2010) inefficient duplication of procurement overheads (see later)
    “Market logic applies to narrow deliverables, but misses out the crucial dimension that allows doctors to heal, teachers to teach and carers to care: the relationship with patient, pupil or client.” NEF 2006
    Essentially ‘untrusting’ & ‘uni-directional’
    The University of Northampton
  • Chapter 1 of Dialogue Mapping: Building Shared Understanding
    of Wicked Problems, by Jeff Conklin, Ph.D., Wiley,
    October 2006.
    The problem with social issues
    The University of Northampton
    lets take a diversion for a minute
    “Some problems are so complex that you have to be highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them”
    Dr. Laurence Johnston Peter
  • Wicked Issues
    The problem is not understood until after the formulation of a solution.
    Wicked problems have no stopping rule.
    Solutions to wicked problems are not right or wrong.
    Every wicked problem is essentially novel and unique.
    Every solution to a wicked problem is a 'one shot operation'
    Wicked problems have no given alternative solutions.
    Horst & Rittel and Conklin
    The University of Northampton
    lets take a diversion for a minute
  • lets take a diversion for a minute
    Tamed Problems
    PS, the trick is not to tame an issue,
    but to keep it wicked
    Chapter 1 of Dialogue Mapping: Building Shared Understanding
    of Wicked Problems, by Jeff Conklin, Ph.D., Wiley,
    October 2006.
  • Social construction of procurement
    lets take a diversion for a minute
  • The (hidden) overhead for the Big Society
    “Perceived need to control the very complex arrangements for delivery of services leads to layer upon layer of indirect activity.”
    A team to specify what service is needed and to create a bidding specification
    Several organisations to commit resources to create competitive bids often, in the case of activities that will last over several years, these bids can run into hundreds, even thousands, of pages and cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds to produce
    The “purchasing” team to negotiate, answer queries, re-specify details and so on, before ultimately selecting one “provider”
    The provider to set up a democratic structure with Board, committees, procedures to supervise and give legitimacy, and to demonstrate “Good Governance”
    The committee to be involved with the “purchaser” in setting up a new organisation that meets all the expectations of “good practice”, equal opportunities, financial accountability to the last penny, smooth public relations to let the public know that they are there and so on
    A building, a phone system, intranet/ website/ customer and back-office systems strong enough to give people the information they need for complete public accountability
    Sub-contracts for cleaning, food, stationery (lots and lots of paper!), maintenance
    A Human Resources department, disciplinary and grievance procedures, appraisal and career
    development system
    Salaries, bonuses, pension provisions, cars and allowances for indirect staff and senior managers all at competitive market rates
    And so on and so forth
    By Charlotte Young, Chair of School for Social Entrepreneurs and Nick Temple, Policy + Communications Director, School for Social Entrepreneurs June 2010
    The University of Northampton
    therefore: getting back on track
  • Outcomes based commissioning
    Ignores the equity required in the process of delivery
    Neutral regarding how the contractor achieves the outcomes- performativity
    Services cease or don’t expand when fixed outcomes are met
    Unintended outcome ignored
    The University of Northampton
  • Social Impact Bond
    requires the taming of an issue to agree on the metrics of success
    Secures long-term investment to create short-terms savings in government spending
    Enticing, but is very close to PPP without consideration of who the ‘social investors’ are, and what return on investment they require
    The University of Northampton
  • Personal budgets
    Leads to a ‘retail consumption’ model of service provision and use
    Individual budgets without mutual support misunderstand the nature of public services.
    Replaces relationships with market transactions
    Buying a dog with a personal budget
    what users need is long-term relationships of mutual trust if they are going to benefit.
    drift to Maybelline model of services
    The University of Northampton
  • Mixed provision is no panacea
    Pathways is led by Jobcentre Plus in some areas but is contracted out to third sector and private organisations in over 60 per cent of the country.
    The National Audit Office found that there is no evidence that the programme is performing better or costing significantly less in contracted out areas than in those run by Jobcentre Plus.
    the private contractors were only really any good at the easy bits of the contract - the volunteer particpants in the scheme who were keen to get back into work.
    When it came to the really hard, time consuming, expensive cases - people who were reluctantly forced onto the scheme - no provider excelled, but the private sector performed even worse than Jobcentre Plus.
    One third of prime contractors and two thirds of subcontractors expecting to make a financial loss.
    National Audit Office 28 May 2010 ‘Support to incapacity benefit claimants through Pathways to Work’.
    The University of Northampton
  • Relational contracting
    Tony knows more than me!
    increasing the degree of contractual incompleteness can enhance efficiency (Wu & Roe 2007)
    The University of Northampton
  • Coping with the problems
    not seeking to propose a ‘one size fits all’ solution that tames the wickedness of this issue
    The University of Northampton
  • Trust
    Hidden currency of contract success
    Large number of small interactions
    Regular interactions
    Direct transaction
    Open, transparent sharing of trust feedback
    Technology now exists to provide for micro-transactions, micro-manufacturing and transacting trust relationships- ebay, paypal, facebook, smart phone apps
    The University of Northampton
  • Co-production
    reduce or blur the distinction between producers and consumers of services, by
    reconfiguring the ways in which services are developed and delivered
    services can be most effective when people get to act in both roles
    as providers as well as recipients.
    The University of Northampton
  • Pro-suming
    Prosuming is the creation of wealth without being paid for it, doing it for yourself or to give it away. Alvin Toffler, Third Wave 1980
    In mental health- peer provision
    The University of Northampton
  • To develop NEF
    Define public service clients as assets who have skills that are vital to the (cost-effective) delivery of services.
    Define work ‘long-term share value’ to include anything that people do to support each other.
    Include some element of reciprocity.
    NEF example “engaging disaffected 16-year-olds by using them as tutors for 14-year-olds, and achieving both major academic improvement for both and reductions in bullying.”
    The value of the engagement, and consequent efficiency, is lost to the system
    Let the 16-year olds earn ‘sweat equity’
    NOT – more ‘procurement with new organisations on the same, old, terms
    The University of Northampton
  • The University of Northampton
    value unpaid labour
    3rd job