1 Collaboration and networks
We are encouraged by the support for all of the proposed actions in this theme. Our analysis of prioritisation scoring shows all of the proposed actions outlined were welcomed by respondents (based on average scoring) and there was particularly strong support for actions CN4, on increasing the use of external funding by Scottish manufacturing, and CN5, on promoting collaboration between companies around sharing resources, costs and risks.
The Recovery Plan Partnership are greatly encouraged by the depth and detail of responses on this Priority work stream. Many responses embraced the intent behind the actions and included strong suggestions on how to evolve, bolster or improve their delivery. A summary of some of the key themes of the comments received is below.
Signpost and Simplify – The extent of the existing support infrastructure was welcomed. Comments included a desire to avoid duplication of effort. The Recovery Plan partners need to integrate with, and utilise, existing mechanisms but maximise their impact through making access to support as simple as possible.
Ease of Collaboration – There was a wide range of offers to support the efforts of Recovery Plan partners and others in the sector. This was expressed generally but also through more specific ideas around maximising the visibility of opportunities, working jointly on contracts, encouraging diversity including through international engagement and sharing best practice. There was a consistent desire expressed to ensure strong partnerships between academia, the further education sector and industry are maintained and evolved.
Wider Landscape – Respondents consistently noted the need to position support in a way that drives innovation and nurtures the growth of emerging sectors. This is particularly the case in the context of net zero ambitions and a number of respondents noted the links needed to energy and transport sector programmes. The need to link to and dovetail with existing initiatives and support centres was often raised including continuing to build Scottish representation in UK schemes. Some also expressed a desire to see regulatory provisions designed to drive the manufacturing base.
Investment – Ambitions to maximise investment were welcomed. These included a desire to see alignment with the Scottish National Investment Bank's objectives and to utilise the strengths and knowledge of Scotland's investment community to support the creation of new support measures if required and maximise inward investment prospects. All of this is geared to supporting manufacturers in Scotland, especially SMEs, to realise emerging opportunities as described above and share risk.
Facilities and Infrastructure – Many respondents were keen to emphasise the significant range of support services available or planned in different parts of Scotland. The need to ensure Scotland's infrastructure was as ready as possible to take advantage of emerging markets was also raised, with a desire to drive more effective use of existing infrastructure and buildings.