Latest Updates

Let's not get back to normal - it wasn't so nice

23 Apr 2021 Nick GarbuttPolicy, Economy

 Katherine Trebeck, Senior Strategic Advisor for the Wellbeing Economy Alliance argues the case for radical, lasting change.*

Time to address the brain drain

23 Apr 2021 Nick GarbuttEducation, Economy

During its short existence Northern Ireland’s only think tank Pivotal has made significant contributions to improving debate about some of the challenges we face.

Communicating is harder in the pandemic

22 Apr 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, communications

Photo by Sticker Mule on Unsplash

Covid-19 has left charities will a range of challenges that is broad and deep. One of these is communications, a crucial – but oft overlooked – aspect of any organisation.

How pandemic exposed weakness of the union

16 Apr 2021 Nick GarbuttPolitics

An important new report explores how the UK government’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic has left an already fragile union even closer to breaking up.

Charity funding in a changing world

15 Apr 2021 Ryan MillerFunding, Fundraising, Sector Issues

National Lottery Community Fund NI Director Kate Beggs

Covid-19 has exacerbated a financial squeeze for the third sector. Scope speaks with Kate Beggs, from the National Lottery Community Fund, about the changing face of funding.

The road to grown-up government, tax and spend

9 Apr 2021 Nick GarbuttPublic policy, Finance

Away from the headlines, the talk shows and the increasingly hysterical public discourse, work is underway that may ultimately lead to more grown-up government in Northern Ireland.

Tax the rich – even just a bit more

7 Apr 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, Fundraising, Civil Society, Health, Social Policy, Welfare

Photo by BP Miller on Unsplash

Modern economics is hampered by politics. This has huge ramifications for Covid-19 recovery and, longer-term, for society, poverty and the third sector.

Lost lives: grief in a time of Covid

26 Mar 2021 Nick GarbuttHealth and Wellbeing

This week marked a commemoration for all those who have lost their lives in the Covid-19 pandemic. At the time it took place the total was 126,284 across the UK of which 2,107 were from Northern Ireland.

Tackling loneliness will be a bellwether for Covid-19 recovery

25 Mar 2021 Ryan MillerLoneliness, Covid-19, Sector Issues, Social Policy, Mental Health

Red Cross NI Director Sharon Sinclair

New research from the Red Cross lays bare how, for many people, coronavirus has led to loneliness. The root causes cut across every aspect of the pandemic.

Getting back to nature: unlocking the great outdoors

19 Mar 2021 Nick GarbuttEnvironment

One of the most frustrating paradoxes of life in Northern Ireland is that we are surrounded by great beauty but have precious little access to it.

News is a utility but, to survive, it needs charity

17 Mar 2021 Ryan MillerJournalism, Sector Issues, Social Policy

Journalism is in crisis. Its weakness is part of something wider that is undermining society. Financing independent reporting is necessary – but not sufficient – to steer away from disaster. Journalism also needs public confidence.

Forest Schools: an idea whose time has come

12 Mar 2021 Nick GarbuttEducation, Environment

There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.

Bringing wellbeing to Northern Ireland

9 Mar 2021 Ryan MillerSocial Policy, Governance, Equality, Wellbeing, Economy

NI needs to budget towards outcomes

New research from the Carnegie Trust has laid out a path for Northern Ireland to become a place that puts the genuine needs and wants of its people first.

How to pay for social care

5 Mar 2021 Nick GarbuttHealth, Social Care

Northern Ireland's powers to raise it own revenues are so limited that it is almost entirely dependent on the British Treasury via the Block Grant for the monies it can spend. 

Where next for health reform?

3 Mar 2021 Ryan MillerHealth, Health and Social Care, Health Reform, Brexit, Bengoa

Oliver Twist asking for more

Before Covid-19, reform of Health and Social Care was the biggest challenge facing Stormont. That challenge remains, but the ability to meet it may be diminished.

Time to count the cost of segregated education

25 Feb 2021 Nick GarbuttEducation

A review of Northern Ireland’s education system is due to get under way later this year.

Data can be both substance and style

23 Feb 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, outcomes, Statistics, Funding, Fundraising. Best Practice

Dr Donna Kernaghan

Numbers can enhance narratives and even tell tales of their own. Scope speaks with Dr Donna Kernaghan, founder of Stats & Stories, about how data can help organisations improve services and secure funding.

Putting people in the lead

19 Feb 2021 Nick GarbuttPolicy, Sector Issues

The pandemic has led to severe curtailment of our freedoms. Recovering from it should not just involve restoring but enhancing them. It is time to put people in the lead.

Third sector has a chance to change its relationship with government

16 Feb 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, Equality, Funding, Civil Society

NICVA CEO Seamus McAleavey

Charities, departments and the civil service could work together better. NICVA’s new manifesto is a great starting point for developing a new relationship – and is out for consultation.

Poverty: Society’s open wound

16 Feb 2021 Nick GarbuttPoverty, Social Policy

Department for Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey outlines her plans to tackle poverty. 


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