Review of Scottish public sector procurement in construction

Report of the independent review of procurement in construction carried out by Robin Crawford and Ken Lewandowski.

2. Terms of reference and method

2.1.1 In October 2012, Scottish Ministers set the terms of reference for this report, which are:

"To review the entire public sector and affordable housing sector construction procurement arrangements in Scotland and make recommendations to support improvements in efficiency, delivery and sustainability of construction procurement projects across the Scottish public sector and to ensure that Scotland's public and affordable housing sectors make best use of both their and the industry's resources."

The full terms of reference are included in appendix 1.

2.1.2 We have carried out around 120 interviews with stakeholders, examined numerous submissions from individuals and federations and had support from government officials and Ministers. We also formed two consultative groups, one comprising representatives of the contracting industry (including some of the many trade and professional bodies) and representatives of the public sector client group and the other comprising only a grouping of public sector clients. The first of these groups met three times and the second group met twice. More detail is contained in appendix 5. We are very grateful for the time and careful thought given by all who have commented on the process.

2.1.3 We have also examined a wide range of reports which have been prepared in the past on public sector construction procurement reform including the work done by the Cabinet Office and Chief Construction Adviser in developing the UK Government's approach [2] . We have used questionnaires to gather evidence on practices in some areas of spend including social housing and hubCos. We have met with those responsible for the construction procurement reform programme in England and Northern Ireland and have gathered evidence of some procedures in other jurisdictions.

2.1.4 Although the current economic backcloth is leading to reductions in public spending, this report is not focussed within that context, but is intended to outline a series of measures which will be relevant whatever the economic climate.

2.1.5 This report is the next stage in the Scottish Government procurement reform process. In its preparation, we have had regard to the principles set out in the 2006 Review of Public Procurement in Scotland by John F. McClelland CBE [3] (the McClelland report) and to the structures and processes which it promoted. Where possible, we have sought to build on these structures and processes rather than recommend an altogether new approach.

2.1.6 We have sought to define all abbreviations where they are first used and, in addition, a glossary of abbreviations is included within the appendices.


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