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New Alliance report offers blueprint for world-leading legislation on wellbeing and sustainable development

Our new report, ‘Towards a Wellbeing and Sustainable Development Scotland Bill’ published today, provides detailed recommendations for new, world-leading legislation that puts joined-up policymaking, linking global and domestic priorities, alongside human and environmental wellbeing, at the forefront of decision-making.  

Last autumn, the Scottish Government committed to bring forward a Wellbeing and Sustainable Development (Scotland) Bill in its Programme for Government 2021-22. 

This commitment was welcomed by many. Ahead of the 2021 Scottish Election, over 70 organisations from across Scottish civic life, challenged Holyrood’s political parties to state their support for such legislation. 

Our new report, aimed at policymakers, makes the case that this new legislation should trigger a step change in the way policy is developed and delivered in Scotland. It could ensure sustainable development and wellbeing become the main drivers of policy and practice across public life in Scotland. 

As explained in the report, this is needed because it is clearer than ever before that our systems are not working for people, or for the planet.  

The report recommends ways to ensure the global impact of Scotland’s actions are considered, not as an optional extra, but as key both to what we want to achieve, and how we do it.  

It also lays out how this legislation can generate a culture of continuous improvement in Scotland; one that encourages, nurtures and supports the public sector to make a progressively enhanced contribution to sustainable development, at home and abroad.  

Frances Guy, CEO of the Alliance, said: 

“Soaring global food prices are threatening the world’s most vulnerable with famine, just as those in Scotland face an unprecedented cost of living crisis. 

Tackling the pressing social and environmental challenges of our time is crucial, and this requires new ways of thinking.  

Following COP26, Scotland has sought to be a good global citizen. This legislation could help back up those ambitions with actions, and would be a critical step towards delivering the outward facing, compassionate, and environmentally sustainable country we all want to live in.” 

You can access the full report here, as well as explore the full research here.

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