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by Staff reporter
05 March 2021
Scotland 'needs more think tanks' to make the most of devolution

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Scotland 'needs more think tanks' to make the most of devolution

Scotland needs a stronger "policy ecosystem" to meet the challenges of the COVID recovery and make the most of devolution, it has been claimed.

In a new report, IPPR Scotland, a think tank, said there was "significant potential" under the current devolution settlement to make good policy which improves people's lives.

However, it said there are too few think tanks in Scotland and not enough funding available for policy research focussed on the parliament's powers. 

IPPR Scotland said its research had shown that a strong and transparent think tank sector could help strengthen democracy.

Russell Gunson, director of IPPR Scotland, said: “As Scotland’s powers have grown since devolution, so too has our policy ambition. But we must do more to ensure that as a country we have the policy capacity and think tank sector we need to match our new responsibilities and help us to get the big decisions we face right.  

“This report shows that Scotland is seen as a place where innovative policy approaches are taken, and where the potential for improving people's lives is huge. But it also shows some of the barriers seen by people to providing the evidence and ideas that could help us meet that potential.

“By encouraging greater levels and variety of funding for policy research in Scotland, and by promoting new ways of working among policy organisations in Scotland, we can begin to see Scotland’s capacity catch up with its powers and potential." 

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