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Here is all the news from across the sector from December 2019. If you want a policy briefing sent to you each week you can sign up to our Tiny Letter - 

GO Lab 

Opinion How should Boris Johnson’s new government set about reforming UK public services? – In his monthly blog, Nigel Ball reflects on public service delivery and how people are feeling ‘done to’ and disempowered’. He makes a call for greater collaboration and stronger community engagement, and room for more experimentation and learning. A post-election viewpoint from the GO Lab. 

Interview The voice of the service user – visiting Project Apollo in Sheffield – Last month, Grace (me!) visited Project Apollo in Sheffield to learn about the social impact bond and how it helps young people who have been in care to gain employment. We’re keen to hear from service users and will be doing more work on this in the coming months. In this interview, we hear from the Project Coordinator and a young person who is participating in the programme. GO Lab

News Sign up to the GO Lab monthly newsletter – You will be the first to hear about the latest GO Lab events, such as our Social Outcomes Conference, blogs we have written and events we are speaking at. 

Impact bonds 

News Abu Dhabi to launch Gulf’s first social impact bond in 2020 – The Authority for Social Contribution (Ma’an) will introduce a social impact bond next year. Ma’an is currently looking into 24 different projects with the possibility to be developed into a SIB. Arabian Business

Opinion Social impact bonds could benefit from greater transparency – Local government commissioners have called for SIBs to be rebranded but this might not be what they need. Dr Alec Fraser (lecturer at KCL) and Dr Clare FitzGerald (Research Fellow at the GO Lab) share their thoughts. You have to register to read this article, but it is free to do so. Public Finance 

Impact, collaboration and outsourcing

Opinion Measuring impact may never be as straightforward as measuring financial returns – This article looks at the challenge to investors of measuring impact, considering financial returns provide an obvious yardstick. The author thinks that we need to start getting investors used to the idea that impact performance will always be disaggregated and it is up to them to decide which outcomes they value more than others. Devex

Podcast Non-profit and government collaborations move at the ‘speed of trust’ – This podcast captures a discussion between two Californian mayors on how public sector and non-profit leaders can work together in a time of anxiety and disruption. ‘I’ve seen fear around collaboration – how is it going to take something away from me? We have got to think big. We have got to be less afraid’ Stanford Social Innovation Review 
Opinion Who put the ‘S’ in ‘ESG’ (and what does it mean? – This piece looks at Environmental, Social and Governance investing and zooms in on what social investing really is, the challenges and how it is different from earlier efforts. Washington Post 

Opinion Outsourcing and insourcing – the critical local trade union branch role – Local trade union branches must be strategically aware of their authority or agency’s policy in respect of outsourcing, writes public policy advisor John Tizard. Public Finance