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The Potential of Community Wealth Building

QCAP team members Brendan Murtagh and Andrew Grounds recently presented research results at a Community Wealth Building event organised by Development Trusts Northern Ireland (DTNI).

QCaptures image: Brendan Murtagh and Andrew Grounds

The research had been carried out by DTNI, Trademark and the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES). The event provided a useful platform to critically assess the way forward for central and local government as well as social enterprises working to embed community wealth building practices across Northern Ireland.

The conference also reviewed the experiences of other places including Cleveland (USA), Preston (England) and North Ayrshire (Scotland). Chaired by John Campbell BBCNI Business and Economics Editor, the speakers were:

  • Deirdre Hargey, Minister for Communities, Northern Ireland Executive
  • Ted Howard, CEO, The Democracy Collaborative, United States
  • Sarah Longlands, CEO, Centre for Local Economic Strategies
  • Aine Gawthorpe, Director, Foundation Economy, Welsh Government
  • Brendan Murtagh, Professor, School of Natural and Built Environment, Queen’s University Belfast.

The QCAP team members used the conference to disseminate the research findings from a series of Technical Advisory Papers (TAPs) which were organised within an overarching Community Wealth Building framework completed between January and March 2022. The delivery of the 5 TAPs were informed by the DTNI survey of development trusts, area-based consultations and thematic discussions in areas such as procurement, community banking and the potential of participatory budgeting. The five papers are:

  • TAP 1: Plural ownership of the economy
  • TAP 2: Making financial power work for local places
  • TAP 3: Fair employment and just labour markets
  • TAP 4: Socially productive use of land and property
  • TAP 5: Progressive procurement of goods and services

These thematic areas are central to shaping a community wealth building policy response from the perspective of the Department for Communities (DfC) through Engaged Communities, Regeneration, Housing, Local Government as well as across its own services including procurement. All five TAP’s will be disseminated over the forthcoming months via the QCAPtures platform and will represent a useful body of research to help the local social enterprise sector and promote more effective community wealth building practices across Northern Ireland.

For more on DTNI follow this link.