The begging bowl approach has run its course

Competition for funding for local projects is no substitute for a clear strategy that makes choices about where money is to be spent to achieve an objective, says Andrew Carter.

The begging bowl culture defining the relationship between Whitehall and the rest of the country is taking some lustre off levelling up. Although Government has committed to funding simplification, we are yet to see progress.

The competitive bidding framework is the central aspect of the process of allocating funding for levelling up. Politicians from all parties deride the begging bowl culture, and levelling up secretary Michael Gove has said he is willing to reform the current process. West Midlands mayor Andy Street has been an outspoken critic of the competitive approach used by the Government to allocate funding for local projects.

Andrew Carter

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