At Shared Assets we believe that our land and natural resources should work for everyone.
Land based social enterprises are pioneering the development of new models of land management that deliver shared social, economic and environmental benefits, but they face significant challenges.
We undertake research, policy and advocacy work to identify what needs to change so that common good approaches to land management can thrive.
We work on a range of policy issues that are standing in the way of common good land use.
Practitioners, landowners and policy-makers all need knowledge and information about current best practice and existing models and challenges. A strong evidence base will also be crucial to make the case for systemic change.
Our research spans a broad range of land-based issues, and is communicated through our publications, thought-pieces and events. We bring together our knowledge of innovative approaches to practice on the ground, with the latest research and policy recommendations where necessary. Previous research partners have included the Forestry Commission, the National Trust and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.
This spectrum, created by Kate Swade, reflects the diverse nature of agreements of tenure than communities can consider when working towards taking on land or an asset and what might be appropriate for different uses. In some cases, there may also be a ‘journey’ with a lease leading to more responsibility and eventually, ownership as trust and track record are built. This can be useful for the community in question as well, as business models are tested and resource built to back the maintenance overheads required by ownership. Consideration should be made by the local authority of how much freedom and security are necessary to enable any investment needed and support innovation growth.
This report explores the impact of the planning system on UK woodland social enterprises. It summarises the key parts of the planning system in all 4 UK countries, and outlines some of the main challenges that WSEs have with the system. It was commissioned by the Making Local Woods Work programme, and complements nicely with our previous report on Planning for Common Good Land Use, but takes a deep dive into the often complex world of planning and forestry. It consists of three main elements:
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Common good land use
At Shared Assets, we meet and work with many inspiring land-based social and community enterprises. These models of common good land use illustrate some of the most successful examples of enterprising community-led land management in the UK. Here are some examples.
Our ‘public’ spaces are increasingly privately owned and managed. The consequences for our major civic squares and plazas have been a concern for years, but what happens when residents lose control of the management of their local spaces, or how much those services cost them? Mark Walton takes a look behind some recent headlines.
Ola is our new Projects Officer, joining us after over a year of working on farms across the UK and Nigeria. Read this blog to find out a bit about his background, what motivated him to join the Shared Assets team, and what he’s looking forward to learning and he begins his career in this sector.
Neighbourhood planning was introduced in the Localism Act 2011. It is an important and powerful tool that gives communities statutory powers to shape how our communities develop.
We’re looking at how our mapping application, Land Explorer, can support communities build in resilience, plan for adaptation and work towards restoration.