Think tank seeks views on the voluntary sector’s independence

Think tank Civil Exchange is seeking views on the voluntary sector’s relationship with government as it sets out to analyse the sector’s future independence.

Civil Exchange plans to build on the work of the Panel on the Independence of the Voluntary Sector, which came to an end when it published its final report, An Independent Mission: the voluntary sector in 2015, in February this year.

The think tank will produce two further annual assessments of the independence of the voluntary sector and its relationship with the state, and is inviting evidence now.

Civil Exchange director Caroline Slocock said the next 18 months will be critical for the independence of the sector. Prime Minister David Cameron has called for a smarter state in which the voluntary sector and Government collaborate to address need, Slocock said, but realising this would require “a huge shift in culture and practice”.

“We will be exploring whether recent negative trends can be reversed - which include contract terms and legislation that restrict the sector’s independent voice; reduced consultation; and weak protections and regulation to stop state interference. We will also look at whether devolution will make genuine collaboration easier.”

The reports, to be published in early 2016 and 2017, will also be considering whether the voluntary sector and its regulators are doing all they can to maintain the sector’s independent mission.

“Some big charities have come under increasing fire in recent months, raising legitimate questions about whether they are genuinely following their mission and values in everything they do,” Slocock said.

To provide input to the reviews, contact Civil Exchange.

    Share Story:

Recent Stories


How is the food and agricultural crisis affecting charity investment portfolios?
Charity Times editor, Lauren Weymouth, is joined by Jeneiv Shah, portfolio manager at Sarasin & Partners to discuss how the current pressures placed on agriculture and the wider food system is affecting charity investment portfolios.

Better Society