Supporting collaboration between the third and public sectors: evidence review

Findings of research conducted by Scottish Government researchers to better understand current barriers to effective collaboration between third sector organisations and the public sector.

6. Conclusions and Next Steps

It can be concluded from the rapid literature review and stakeholder interviews undertaken that the four key areas that have emerged - funding, meaningful collaboration, procurement and lack of trust, present frequent challenges for collaboration between third sector and public sector organisations. This report highlights that there is a need for improvements to practices, processes, and relationship building across the public and third sectors if these barriers are to be overcome and changes, like those seen in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, are realised.

These research findings will be used to guide engagement with the third sector on the design and development of a number of areas of work throughout 2022-2023. These will aim to catalyse and enable positive collaboration, explore practical ways of tackling some of the barriers to collaboration, and focus on learning about what works.

The planned projects include:

  • Working with a range of stakeholders to understand what fair and sustainable funding means across sectors, and to develop a shared understanding of the barriers and enablers to this.
  • Using one Scottish Government funding stream (the Community Capacity and Resilience Fund - CCRF) to test more flexible, trusting and innovative approaches to funding, and learning from the results.
  • Developing a shared understanding of the barriers and enablers of multi-year funding from the perspectives of the voluntary sector, national and local governments.
  • Understanding and building on the results of research into the procurement of voluntary sector services.
  • Developing a knowledge bank on other projects that are underway to reflect on and improve commissioning and procurement across sectors, and share learning.



Back to top