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DWP Innovation Fund

DWP have released a prospectus regarding the Innovation Fund which will see 8-12 contracts awarded to Social Investment Partnerships sharing the £30 million fund over 3 years.  Two round of bidding (July 2011 and later 2011) will be seeking innovative approaches to achieving:

  • 14-17 year olds to participate and succeed in education or training in order to achieve better employment outcomes;
  • 16-17 year olds with outcomes focused on remaining in education or training (including Apprenticeships and work with training).
  • 18 + age group focused on securing employment.
  • Development of new and sustainable social investment partnerships and building delivery capacity.

The prospectus makes it clear that the investors (who will not be involved in delivery) will need to underwrite the full delivery costs and take the risks of payment by outcomes.  The tone seems to be more direct than the Work Programme approach.  It also champions the Social Impact Bonds that have been trialled across the country in the last few years.

While DWP aren't prescribing the locations or the customer groups there are some strong indications in the prospectus as to who / where these projects should be aimed.

Visit the Innovation Fund section of DWP's website for the prospectus and to register for the briefing events at the start of July.  Short sighted as usual there is a single event booked for London, Cardiff and Edingburgh.  And of course, London won't be popular at all!


15 June 2011

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