Review of reviews

The protracted divorce proceedings which have followed the UK’s vote to leave the European Union have largely put other public-policy making on hold. This Brexit-induced vacuum has been filled by an outpouring of reviews which, at first glance, may offer proof that Parkinson’s Law is alive and well. Their closer reading, however, allays any notion that these are merely the products of “work expanding to fill the time available.”

This spate of strategies and think pieces on the future of civil society conveys both the momentous social changes which are underway and asks some searching questions of London’s funders. To what extent do their analyses and recommendations form a coherent narrative which challenges the nature of future funding?

London Funders’ “Review of Reviews” explores what they have in common, and where there are notable discrepancies, or differences of emphasis. Focusing on the following “Big Five”, we consider the implications for civil society in the capital, for London Funders and our members of:
• The government’s Civil Society Strategy Building a Future that Works for Everyone;
• Civil Society Futures the output from the independent inquiry, chaired by Julia Unwin;
• The Charity Commission’s Statement of Strategic Intent, 2018-23;
• Centre for London’s More, Better, Together: A Strategic Review of Giving in London and related philanthropy strategic reviews for City Bridge Trust and the Greater London Authority; and
• The Office for Civil Society’s review of Place based Giving Schemes Funding, Engaging and Creating Stronger Communities.
Click here for the full report, and here for a blog by John Griffiths.