How can diversity and inclusion be improved across government to increase sustainability?

October 14, 2021
United Kingdom
Supply chains

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These days, many civil service bodies try to realise public policy goals not only through their policies and services, but also within their operations – and those of their contractors. Departments and agencies increasingly select partners on the basis of their environmental and social sustainability, choosing to work with companies that share their interest in caring for people and the planet.

So service commissioning and procurement requirements increasingly consider, for example, the need to support small businesses, the voluntary sector and deprived communities; the contractor’s commitment to equal opportunities and social justice; and the company’s progress towards net zero. In part, these goals can be realised by developing contract and partnership models that incentivise the right behaviours, from the boardroom to the shopfloor; in part, they rest on the more nebulous task of finding a partner with the right cultural ‘fit’.

At this webinar, experts from both the commissioning and contracting side explored how to embed social goals into their partnerships – using procurement and subcontracting to boost each other’s development on topics from inclusion to environment. Supported by WT Partnership, the webinar considered how to appraise potential suppliers, explore a range of contracting models, develop a partnership, and establish a learning and improvement cycle.


Snowia Hussain, Social Value Lead, Commercial and Contract, Management Directorate, Ministry of Justice

A Social Value professional with over 7 years experience developing and implementing social value strategies within public sector commercial teams. Recent roles have included acting as Responsible Procurement Lead for Westminster and Camden Councils as well as undertaking a 6-month secondment to the Cabinet Office as Programme Manager working on the Government’s new social value model (PPN 06/20). Currently also leading on the development of the first Modern Slavery Statement produced by the Ministry of Justice.

Lulu Tucker, Strategy and Planning Project Manager, Leeds Teaching Hospitals, NHS Trust, UK

Currently acting as Social Value Lead for the Hospitals of the Future Project. Recent roles have included acting as a Project Manager for NHS England and the NHS Improvement’s Anchor Institutions Programme, delivering on how the NHS can address the wider determinants of health. Acting Inclusion and Diversity Ambassador for Future Focussed Finance, supporting work to improve disparities in the diversity of staff recruited across NHS Finance.


Dean Smith, Joint Managing Director, WT Partnership

Joint Managing Director of WT (UK & Europe), an independent international FM, project, cost, and H&S consultancy. Dean is a Chartered Surveyor with over 30 years’ experience in providing practical strategic advice to a wide range of public and private sector clients both in the UK and overseas. Clients include BUPA, General Electric, Royal Bank of Scotland, NHS Trusts, Zoological Society of London, Manchester Airport, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Justice and HM Courts & Tribunal Service and charity organisations.
Throughout his career Dean has promoted social value, innovation and managed change where this provides tangible benefits to his clients towards achieving their organisations’ objectives.

David Mann, Partner, Tuffin Ferraby Taylor LLP

David has over 25 years experience helping investors and funders navigate building surveying matters across their portfolios. Specialising in Technical Due Diligence and Development Monitoring for clients including Legal & General, M&G Real Estate, Aviva and The Crown Estate. He is currently working on the new De Beers/Anglo American HQ in Hatton Gardens and 9 of the new HMRC Regional Hub Offices throughout the UK.
David chairs the RICS working group producing the latest industry guidance on Technical Due Diligence, and works with RICS, British Property Federation and REVO to promote diversity and inclusion across the industry.
He co-founded and co-chairs Freehold, a networking and support group for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) real estate professionals. The group has over 1000 members and holds regular professional and networking events, mentoring and charitable activities for LGBT people working in property and construction. Freehold won ‘Outstanding Contribution to Property’ in the EG Awards 2018.

Kirsty Bargh, Quantity Surveyor, WT Partnership

Kirsty is a Quantity Surveyor for WT (UK & Europe) possessing 6+ years industry experience. Recent roles have included acting as Cost Consultant to the Ministry of Justice within their Transforming Rehabilitation and Approved Premises Programmes as well as managing the financial delivery of office and hostel refurbishments/fit outs.
Kirsty has experience working with public sector clients such as West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and East Riding of Yorkshire Council to deliver major refurbishment projects and experience of contract management and all aspects of construction from pre to post contract.
She is an ESG and Corporate Social Responsibility champion for WT with a proven ability to work as part of a team to promote these initiatives company wide.

Webinar chair: Siobhan Benita, former UK senior civil servant

Siobhan Benita was a senior civil servant with over 15 years’ Whitehall experience. She worked in many of the major delivery departments, including Transport, Environment, Health and Local Government. She also had senior roles at the heart of Government in the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury, including supporting the then Cabinet Secretary, Lord O’Donnell to lead work on Civil Service reform and strategy. Siobhan left the Civil Service to run as an independent candidate in the Mayor of London election. She subsequently joined her alma mater, Warwick University as Chief Strategy Officer of Warwick in London and Co-Director of the Warwick Policy Lab.