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The Procurement of Government Outcomes (POGO) Club is a knowledge sharing initiative that is open to anyone interested in capacity building in public procurement and in collaboration to improve social outcomes. We host monthly calls, maintain a maillist, and share other resources. Participants come from many different disciplines, sectors, and countries. Our chair is Anne Davies, Professor of Law and Public Policy.     

Interested? Join the mailing list by emailing Leigh Crowley. Find us on LinkedIn here.

Aims of our group

  • Helping public sector leaders understand how public procurement may be used to improve social outcomes through collaboration with the private and community / voluntary sectors.
  • Encouraging better alignment of procurement plans with the mission, strategy, and budget of a program, agency or government. 
  • Developing the capacity of procurement practitioners to collaborate and procure social outcomes as part of the professionalisation of public procurement.

Upcoming meetings

Session overview

In this month's Oxford POGO Call we will be revisiting public procurement transformation initiatives. We will discuss what we learnt from the UK Government's response to the consultation on the ‘Green Paper: Transforming public procurement’, and explore other international reform efforts.

Background Resources


16:00-16:05        Welcome by Chair Professor Anne Davies, University of Oxford

16:05-16:50        Transforming public procurement? What we learnt from the UK Government's response to the consultation on the ‘Green Paper: Transforming public procurement’

16:05-16:10        Context Setting Professor Anne Davies, University of Oxford

Reflections on the Oxford POGO Club submission to the Green Paper consultation, what we saw as the strengths and weaknesses?

  • Introduction to guest co-chair Michael Bowsher QC, Barrister, Visiting Professor, Monckton Chambers & Kings College London

Prompt for Presentations and Discussion:

  • How has the government’s thinking moved on in response to the consultation exercise?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the proposals now being pursued?
  • Insights from international reform initiatives.

16:10-16:50        Presentation and Discussion led by Michael Bowsher QC, Barrister, Visiting Professor, Monckton Chambers & Kings College London

Discussion Panel

  • Gavin Hayman (🐤 @GavinHayman_GW, @opencontracting), Executive Director, Open Contracting Partnership
  • Kieran McGaughey, (🐤@KieranMcG_),Solicitor (Commercial Team), Newcastle City Council
  • Julian Blake (🐤 @Julian_A_Blake, @StoneKingLLP), Partner, Stone King
  • Basma Abdul Khalek, (🐤 @BasmaAbdulkhale), Economist, Institut des Finances Basil Fuleihan, Lebanon
  • Caroline Nicholas, Senior Legal Officer, International Trade Law Division, United Nations Commission on International Trade Law

16:35-16:50 Q&A/Open Group Discussion

16:50                    End of year survey: what you said?

17:00                     Meeting closed by Chair


If you would like to join the session and/or join our mailing list to keep in the loop with future events, please contact Leigh Crowley.

Previous meetings

Oxford Procurement of Government Outcomes (POGO) November Call

This month’s Oxford POGO Club (30 November) will be looking at how green policies and environmental outcomes are being embedded in government contracts through public procurement.

Millions of carbon tonnes are produced every year during delivery of government contracts. Public procurement is increasingly being used by governments as a strategic tool to achieve broad economic, social and environmental goals beyond the core requirements of a purchase. For example, the UK government has recently issued Procurement Policy Note (PPN) 06/21: Taking account of Carbon Reduction Plans in the procurement of major government contracts.

For this session, we invited Peter Smith, co-author of the book Procurement with Purpose, to share his insights on how public procurement can be leveraged to achieve additional environmental goals. Elizabeth Forster and Kate Gough will introduce theimplication of PPN 06/21 for government and suppliers. Ian Makgill from the Spend Network will present a new open data tool to help governments prioritise contracts for carbon reduction and when. We will also be joined by Professor Fredo Schotanus, from the Centre for Public Procurement (UUCePP) Utrecht University, who will introduce a call for papers for a special issue of the Sustainability journal titled: 'The new era of sustainable public procurement'.

Deploying public procurement as a strategic driver of innovation is rising up national and regional policy agendas. However, quoting from the recently published UK Innovation Strategy  “the overall culture, expertise and incentive structure of the public sector means there is a low appetite for risk and experimentation”. Overcoming this weak appetite for risk is a major challenge. While there is a deep body of research on procurement law, there is little quantified data on the innovation elements of procurement to guide decision makers.

In this POGO session we will hear about a new Consortium's examination of the research gap and their plans to bridge it. Then we will have perspectives from four specialists who are addressing the challenge and facilitating innovative procurement outcomes at city, region and country level.

October Call
Aligning open contracting in the national action plan and green paper on transforming public procurement

Our June Oxford POGO call took place on 29 June, 4-5pm BST. 

We discussed sustainable public procurement in Europe, with Katharina Vierlich, Head of Unit Public Procurement Policy at European Commission.

Our May call took place on Tuesday 25 May at 16:00 (London).

For this session, we invited leading practitioners to explore data and transparency in social value procurement. This involved a presentation on the topic, followed by a response panel. 

Background Resources

Our April call took place on Tuesday 27 April at 16:00 (London).

The focus of this month's call was system level learning in a procurement system. We explored questions on how the public procurement system is working at a regional level or national level, who gets to know and what they do with that knowledge.

Background Resources

Session recording

Our March call took place on Tuesday 24 March at 16:00 (London).

For our March call, we welcomed Elena Hoffnagle, Project Leader at Government Performance Lab, Harvard Kennedy School, and Gian Luigi Albano, procurement expert and Adjunct Professor of Economics at LUISS “G. Carli”, Rome for two short but substantive discussions on: 1. How to leverage procurement to improve social outcomes; and 2. Thinking about framework agreements.

Background Resources:

Session recording

Our February call took place on Tuesday 23th of February at 16:00 (London)

We had a short but substantive discussion of organisation culture in procurement processes. Our prompt for the panel was: Viewed through a lens of ‘culture’ are there tensions between (i) commercial and public or social value considerations (ii) transactional and partnership / relational working and/or (iii) central oversight and local leadership? 

We presented the law reform working group’s public response to a the UK Government’s Green Paper: Transforming public procurement. We also explored in more depth a key theme to emerge from the working group’s discussion – culture.

Our February call took place on Tuesday 23 February at 16:00 (GMT). 

  • We presented the law reform working group’s public response to the UK Government’s Green Paper: Transforming public procurement
  • We also explored in more depth a key theme to emerge from the working group’s discussion – culture.

Sign up to our new POGO working groups here & join the mailing list by emailing Ruairi Macdonald at

Context: UK Government Green Paper, Transforming Public Procurement

The UK Government has published a Green Paper, Transforming Public Procurement, that is intended to shape the future of public procurement in the UK for many years to come. "The government’s goal is to speed up and simplify our procurement processes, place value for money at their heart, and unleash opportunities for small businesses, charities and social enterprises to innovate in public service delivery". 

In this POGO law reform working group we are proposing to make a written response to this Green Paper. Please join this session by signing up by completing this short suvey to share your comments and reflections on the Green Paper.

If you have any questions about this working group or any of the others listed about please contact Leigh Crowley or Ruairi Macdonald.

POGO Club January Meeting

The session followed and built upon November's meeting discussion on the UK Government's issuing of 'Procurement Policy Note (PPN) 06/20 - taking account of social value in the award of central government contracts'. In this session, we heard reflections from the UK Government and continued our comparisons to see how social value is procured internationally. 

Background Resources:

To register for this event, please contact Ruairi Macdonald or Leigh Crowley.

Taking account of 'social value' in the award of central government contracts

Our May call took place on Tuesday 24th of November at 16:00 (London). 

  • We discussed "social value" in public procurement and contract management.
  • Discussants included: Terry Brewer (Social Value Portal), Julian Blake (Stone King), Ben Carpenter (Social value UK), Abby Semple (Procurement Analysis), Mehdi Shiva (University of Oxford), and Edward Hickman (ATQ Consultants). 

Our July call took place on Tuesday 28th of July at 16:00 (London). 

  • We discussed a Complex Contracting Framework and an Alliance Contracting Model in Plymouth. 
  • Discussants included: Professor Trevor Brown (John Glenn College of Public Affairs, The Ohio State University) and Gary Wallace (Plymouth City Council).

Our June call took place on Tuesday 30th of June at 16:00 (London). 

  • We discussed contract management and outcomes. 
  • Sebastian Barreto Cifuentes presented aspects of his PhD thesis. Daniella Jammes, Mark Roddan, Benjamin Taylor and Paul Conneely offered comments from a practical perspective.  

Our April call took place on Tuesday 28th of April at 16:00 (London). 

  • Professor Sope Williams-Elegbe from Stellenbosch University (South Africa) introduced a discussion on Outcomes Contracting vs. Corruption. 
  • Paulo Magina, Head of the OECD Public Procurement Unit, introduced a discussion on the OECD’s Methodology for Assessing Procurement Systems (MAPS). Check out the MAPS website here

Our March call took place on Tuesday 31st of March at 16:00 (London).

  • We switched from our regular programming to discuss: “Emergency Public Procurement & Contract Changes.” 
  • Prof. Christopher Yukins introduced our discussion. 

Our January call took place on 28th of January 2020

  • Chairperson: Anne Davies 
  • Julian Blake introduced a discussion on the topic "Professional judgment – the scope of procurement professionals’ discretion in law and practice."  
  • Abby Semple shared insights emerging from #WeBuySocialEU - a European Commission (EC) project run by Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI). 
  • Supporting resources included The Art of the Possible (2016) and Procurement to Partnership (2019).