COSLA / IS Annual Conference 2017

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Entitled “Tomorrow’s World” the COSLA and Improvement Service Annual Conference took place in Crieff on Thursday 5th & Friday 6th October 2017.

The keynote event in the Scottish Local Government Calendar, “Tomorrow’s World” was bold in its aspiration and was dynamic in its execution.

The event encapsulated the opportunities and challenges Scottish Local Government faces over the next five years.

Scottish Local Government continues to deliver the best possible services to our communities despite the difficulties we face both financially and in terms of increased demand.

The 2017 Conference was the first for our new President Councillor Alison Evison, who kicked off the event on Thursday morning with her Presidential Address.

There were keynote presentations from the Deputy First Minister John Swinney, and from The Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke, Father of the House.

The conference also heard views from John Curtice, Professor of Politics at the University of Strathclyde, as well as Richard Murphy, Professor of Practice in International Political Economy, and Dr Oliver Escobar, Lecturer in Public Policy.

The last session on the Friday saw a panel session featuring Alex Rowley, Patrick Harvie, Willie Rennie, Donald Cameron and Kevin Stewart, who gave a Parliamentarians view of Local Government over the next five years.

In addition to the keynote speeches, the Conference provided numerous opportunities for delegates to get involved, interact and network.

The Conference was also a celebration of the real difference local government makes in the shape of the Annual COSLA Excellence Awards Ceremony, which took place on the Thursday night.


Thursday 5th October  
8.00amRegistration and Exhibition Viewing  
9.30amWelcome from the ChairGlenn CampbellBBC
9.40amLocal Government Perspective: President's AddressCouncillor Alison EvisonCOSLA
10.00amLocal Government PerspectiveCouncillor Sharon Taylor OBELocal Government Association
10.45amRefreshments and Exhibition Viewing  
11.15amTomorrow's WorldThe Rt. Hon. Kenneth ClarkeMember of Parliament for Rushcliffe and Father of the House
12.00pmThe Future of Local Democracy - Public Participation and Democratic InnovationDr Oliver Escobar What Works Scotland
12.45pmLunch and Exhibition Viewing  
1.30pmFringe Event 1 - Your Army The Amry in Scotland
 Fringe Event 2 - Supporting Place-Making Through the Implementation of the Place Standard NHS Health Scotland
 Fringe Event 3 - Swimming with the Tide: Council Tax and Water and Sewerage Debt - Developing and Sharing Best Practice Citizens Advice Scotland
2.15pmLocal Economy and Inclusive Growth: A New Deal for ScotlandProf. Richard MurphyUniversity of London / Tax Research LLP
  Douglas FraserBBC Scotland
3.15pmRefreshments and Exhibition Viewing  
3.45pmNHS24 - Tomorrow's WorldEsther RobertsonNHS24
4.30pmView from the MediaPeter MacMahonITV Border
4.50pmMinisterial AddressJohn Swinney MSPDeputy First Minister of Scotland
5.15pmClose of Conference  
6.45pmPre-Dinner Reception and Exhibition Viewing  
7.15pmDinner and Ceremony  
9.00pmCOSLA Excellence Awards CeremonyJackie BirdBBC Scotland
Friday 6th October  
8.30amRegistration, Refreshments and Exhibition Viewing  
9.25amWelcome from the ChairGlenn CampbellBBC
9.30amAcademic Session: Current Political Environment and Predictions For Tomorrow's WorldColin MairImprovement Service
 Academic Session: Public Attitudes Towards Scotland's ChallengesProf. John CurticeUniversity of Strathclyde
10.45amRefreshments and Exhibition Viewing  
11.15amParliamentarians view of Local Government challenges and opportunities in Tomorrow's WorldAlex Rowley MSPScottish Labour Party
  Willie Rennie MSPScottish Liberal Democrats
  Patrick Harvie MSPScottish Green Party
  Kevin Stewart MSPScottish National Party
  Donald Cameron MSPScottish Conservative and Unionist Party
12.30pmPolitical Meetings  
2.30pmClose of Conference   


All sessions are available to view here on our Bambuser page.

For more insight into the conference and Excellence awards search on Twitter using the hashtags: #COSLAIS17 and #COSLAAwards17