Rotheram introduces social value measures into planning

Liverpool City Region is to incorporate an evaluation of social value in its Spatial Development Strategy, the over-arching planning document for the city region.

Locally-based consultancy RealWorth has been appointed to work alongside the Combined Authority as it develops its first SDS.

RealWorth, which is billed as “working with organisations to put a price on social and environmental change,” will assist the Combined Authority in evaluating the social value of every policy within the SDS, at every stage in its development, to ensure that they consider the social impacts in areas such as health and wellbeing, as well as economic outcomes.

The SDS will set out an integrated economic, environmental, transport and social framework for the development of the Liverpool City Region over the next 20–25 years.

Steve Rotheram, metro mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said: “Devolution enables us to do things differently and we have seized that opportunity with both hands when it comes to developing policy.

“Fairness and social justice are at the heart of everything we do.  That’s why we were the first Combined Authority to set up a standing Fairness and Social Justice Advisory Board to scrutinise all of our policies and decisions as we make them.

“And we are the first Combined Authority to incorporate a social value evaluation into our Strategic Development Strategy. Economic growth in the city region needs to benefit everyone and that is why we are determined to ensure that the social and environmental impact of any future development is considered alongside the more traditional economic measures.

“Pioneering this approach is key to ensuring that, for decades to come, our city region’s economic growth benefits all of our residents.”

Prof. Erik Bichard, director at RealWorth, said: “The potential to increase social value for people in the Liverpool City Region is a deeply held aspiration for the metro mayor and his team. It takes a forward-looking organisation to integrate this aspiration into policy and practice.

“This project will put the city region at the forefront of this agenda. RealWorth is looking forward to sharing our social value approach with the Combined Authority and others to make the strategy as inclusive and effective as possible.”

The Spatial Development Strategy is currently progressing to an initial non-statutory consultation.

A joint conference exploring how social value can inform development policy, organised by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and RealWorth, is planned for later this year.

Your Comments

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A “fairness and social justice” board is just another unaccountably quango that is going to cost the tax payer more money, for little value

By Stuart wood

What greater social value can there be than creating jobs, taxable wealth and income, regenerating old buildings and improving the environment along the way?

Just a load of lefty bollocks that hasn’t been thought through. The law of unintended consequences will be writ large over this – starting with a slow down in the development sector and the inevitable reduction in investment flows and jobs.

Will these people never learn?

By Sceptical

So this is what my metro mayor tax, incorporated within my council tax, is going towards…… What a waste of money.

By Anonandon

On the right tracks. Good!

By Roscoe

more superficial nonsense from Superficial Steve. This money would be better under Council control, the city-region model was not called for and has added nothing to the lives of ordinary people. It has merely added to Council tax bills for ordinary people at a time of stagnant wage growth and higher living costs. Steve part of the problem, but the model doesn’t work neither. Let’s have a referendum to keep or scrap the model?

By John Smith

One can’t quantify social value. Its just nonsense.

By Millenial

No thanks John. I’m for the city region, we’re right at the beginning, but it was long overdue.
It’s gonna take a while but already greater Liverpool has a voice it’s never had before. We need that… bit like Britain/England really: the Boroughs are too small on their own; but together we’re bigger than Northern Ireland, and if we stick together we can achieve big changes in the longer term.

By Roscoe

How can we know whether a proposed development has an economic benefit (for the community) and not just a commercial benefit (profit for the private investor) if we do not first carry out an economic audit and attach a price to the economic costs and benefits? Admittedly, “social value” is a woolly name, but if you call it “economic value”, folk will think you mean profits, which is a commercial accounting concept. Most people do not know what economic costs and benefits are. They think private profit is the measure of all things, but commercial enterprise is only a small part of the general economy.

By James Yates

This is good news for a city-region featuring some of the most deprived neighbourhoods in the country.

By Equality Pete

An interesting idea …..and one which is worth trying providing it’s not to restrictive…..

By Graham Burgess

Benefit all the residents your having a laugh. Tell that to the residents of Haydock, Merseyside who have monstrous warehouses overwhelming their properties at the bottom of their gardens. The noise and pollution are having adverse effects on health and wellbeing and Rotherham does not want to know. The social value of these builds are negative. Don’t believe a word he says and beware what has happened to the residents of Haydock could happen anywhere under Rotherham’ watch.

By Haha

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