A National Plan? - An ongoing Edge project: 2013-14

Friday, November 15th, 2013 | Uncategorized

We are facing a triple crunch – energy, climate and capital and many more knock on problems. Our planning horizon is too modest and does not appear to be as joined up as it could be. The Edge is proposing a National Plan, something which might once have been called a 10-year plan with a forward proposition as to what the next stages might be.

The point of the exercise is not to say what should be in the plan, that is the business of politics, but to describe its characteristics and to provide a framework to get the idea of a national plan back into our political language.

As a framework the approach will need breadth but not necessarily a great deal of depth (from us). The National Plan needs to be open-source with the detail to be added and developed by others in the course of a nationwide conversation between experts, enthusiasts and those involved in its delivery. The process of development needs to be part and parcel of the plan. What is important is that the framework should identify all the key issues, that a range of options are presented for each issue and that an understandin of the implications that a decision in one area will have on others is apparent.

What the framework should do is to radically reduce the possibility of siloed thinking. We are in a new era, with a new normal. We can no longer rely of the rates of growth we have grown up with to dilute the effects of bad decisions. With reducing resources our choices going forward are more important than they have ever been and we need a tool to understand this process in the round: a framework for a National Plan.

The Edge is currently holding a series of workshops to develop the thinking behind a new National Plan, with its initial findings due to be announced at a keynote session of Ecobuild in March 2014.

If you want to contribute to this discussion please contact the Edge at contact@edgedebate.com

Links & further reading:
- The Great Transition: New Economics Foundation (nef)
- Now for the Long Term: The Report of the Oxford Martin Centre for Future Generations
- A National Plan for the UK: Green New Deal Group
- Edge email string
- A virtual policy modelling machine - static version
- Interactive National Plan Policy Machine - for working out your own policy framework

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