Foundational sectors often struggle to implement, or benefit from, fair work practices. The following reports explore how this could be changed.
A better balance: business support for the foundational economy (2021).
Jack Watkins. The Institute of Welsh Affairs and Centre for Regeneration Excellence Wales.
A review of business support policy and practice of Business Wales, the Development Bank of Wales and Welsh Government and opportunities for changes to better support the foundational economy – ensuring grounded Welsh firms can receive necessary support to supply high quality everyday goods and services. Authors find that current support has positive impacts however only reaches a minority of Welsh firms, because it is often targeted at high-growth firms and particular sectors. Thus, the current support currently does not effectively support micro-firms to become successful and sustainable SMEs – a key part of a healthy foundational economy. Authors suggest measures for policy makers could take to make business support work for the foundational economy better.
Download the paper from The Institute of Welsh Affairs and Centre for Regeneration Excellence Wales on business support for the foundational economy
Fair work in the foundational economy: what should be done (2021).
Victoria Winckler. Bevan Foundation.
A report bringing together key findings from work previously published by the Bevan Foundation on experiences of working within some sectors of the foundational economy and an international review of promising policy and practice to approaches to fair work. It shows that work in the foundational economy is often of low quality including low pay and low hours, highlighting a need to improve terms and conditions. Drawing lessons from the international review, the report makes recommendations for a range of actors including policy makers, local government, Business Wales and the Development Bank for Wales to support fair work within the foundational economy. Authors use The Fair Work Commission in Wales’ components of fair work; fair reward, employee voice and collective representation, security and flexibility, opportunity for access, growth and progression, safe healthy and inclusive work and that legal rights are respected and given substantive effect.
Download the paper from the Bevan Foundation on fair work in the foundational economy
Fair work in the foundational economy: key data (2021).
Anne Green and Paul Sissons. Bevan Foundation.
Download the report from the Bevan Foundation for key data on fair work in the foundational economy
The impact of regulation in the foundational economy (2021).
Jack Watkins and The Means. The Institute of Welsh Affairs, Centre for Regeneration Excellence Wales and The Means.
An outline of the effect of current regulations and their enforcement on Welsh small and medium firms of the foundational economy. Authors use interviews with business owners in construction, social care, food and manufacturing demonstrating confusion over rules, the complexity of overlapping requirements and overly rigid enforcement. The report outlines how regulation and enforcement can disproportionately impact small and medium sized business, causing difficulty for new businesses to be successful. Authors make a series of recommendations for regulatory bodies, including Welsh Government and local authorities to help support small and medium sized businesses of the foundational economy.
Download the paper from the Institute of Welsh Affairs, Centre of Regeneration Excellence Wales and The Means on the impact of regulation in the foundational economy
What can Welsh Government do to increase the number of grounded SME firms in food processing and distribution? (2021).
Andrew Bowman, Julie Froud, Colin Haslam, Sukhdev Johal, Kevin Morgan and Karel Williams. Foundational Economy Research.
An analysis of the Welsh food system from field to fork and the business models of SMEs which form a part of this system, with recommendations on a range of coordinated policies to secure and increase the number of grounded Welsh SMEs processing and distributing food. Authors define a Welsh grounded SME as an SME which is independently owned in Wales with a high proportion of assets in Wales. Authors argue specific policies are required for the specific characteristics of every food system, including Wales. They put forward a number of priorities to move forward; one, engage supermarket chains in a greater effort to recruit Welsh SME suppliers, two, effectively use public procurement to create demand side opportunity and finally maintain and consolidate infrastructures to support Welsh food SMEs.
Download the paper from Foundational Economy Research on what the Welsh Government can do to increase the number of grounded SME firms in food processing and distributing