In the first of a series of short blogs around our conference, Same Picture: Different Lenses, we asked some of the speakers from the event to give us their thoughts on the conference and we start with Peter Davies, Commissioner for Sustainable Futures. You can view Peter’s speech from the conference below
It is possibly surprising that this event represented such a landmark event as the first occasion where the Wales Audit Office and fellow Commissioners came to together to share thoughts on the operations of the public service in Wales. Although for me even more of marker was put down by the active involvement of service users in the conference, which was a real statement of intent to make the language of co-production a reality.
As Commissioner for Sustainable Futures I have always been conscious of a top down approach to programme delivery, whereas the real excitement and energy is most visible in those community led initiatives – so it was good to have a good delegation from the Llanelli Partnership who are shaping the Llanelli we Want.
It is interesting that the first step of the Enabling State presented by Carnegie was to “get out of the way” and there is no doubt that the vacuum created by the reduction of top down delivery capacity due to financial cuts can have the positive effect of allowing the space for communities to shape their own futures. However this first step is not enough and we need to ensure that we invest in capacity of communities to respond and create their own solutions.
Congratulations to the Wales Audit office for not doing what we have always done!
About the Author:
Awarded the OBE in 1995, for work in establishing links between business and
education under the DTI’s Enterprise Initiative, Peter was Managing Director at Business in the Community UK from 1995 to 2005. He returned home to Wales in 2005, and was appointed Commissioner for Wales and Vice Chair of the UK Sustainable Development Commission, providing independent advice to the Welsh and UK Governments.
Following the closure of the UK Commission, the Welsh Government appointed him as Wales’ first Sustainable Futures Commissioner in April 2011. He was also appointed to be the first independent chair of the Climate Change Commission for Wales in 2011.