DCLG tasks New Economy with local government redesign

The Department for Communities & Local Government has appointed New Economy, Greater Manchester's policy think-tank, to advise UK local authorities on redesigning public services and generating sustainable cost-savings.

The package of support will centre upon authorities that are planning to bid for the next round of Government's Transformation Challenge Award, a fund which is available to help them re-engineer business practices and redesign service delivery.

New Economy was chosen to deliver the programme on the back of its successful Cost Benefit Analysis framework, an economic toolkit endorsed by Government which enables local authorities to measure value for money and economic and social impacts, when evaluating public service proposals.

Mike Emmerich, chief executive of New Economy, said: "For some time, a new system has been required to respond to the many complexities of public service reform; which is why I'm delighted that Government has recognised Manchester's CBA methodology is meeting these needs.

"The CBA framework has been borne out of a mature approach to reforming services and it shows how local authorities can adopt better practices to take more control of spending in their areas."

John Holden, director of economic strategy at New Economy, said: "Our team possess the right balance of technical skills to deliver this project and to communicate their methods with non-technical experts. It will be the first time that our cost-saving methodology is used on such a wide scale and we're looking forward to seeing the results, learning new lessons from its implementation, and particularly finding out how we can refine the methods to ensure they achieve maximum impact."

The new engagement programme will build upon a series of CBA roadshows that New Economy has been delivering in partnership with DCLG. The CBA project team will now help other local authorities that are bidding for the Transformation Challenge Award to establish tailored, individualised plans, to support public service transformation.

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