The Local Government Professionals Australia, SA Community Managers Network is hosting the Valuing Social Outcomes project (VSO). The project is to undertake international research on defining, ascribing value to and articulating social outcomes, to inform the development of a toolkit that will support evidence-based decision making and statements of social return regarding the community initiatives of South Australian councils.
The Australian Industrial Transformation Institute – Flinders University (AITI) was engaged in the research stage of the project to provide a report on the international literature and local context relating to the future development of a social impact/value measurement toolkit for South Australian use. The 2017 report by AITI can be downloaded from the top right of this page.
AITI was engaged again for the development stage of the project. The VSO Framework, VSO Tool and content for the VSO Toolkit have been developed as part of this consultancy.
The VSO Toolkit was introduced to the sector at the Local Government Professionals SA Community Managers Network ‘Wellbeing – Beyond the Buzz’ conference on 3 September 2018 at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) to approximately 100 local government sector representatives.
Before being fully published to the South Australia local government sector the VSO Tool is being trialled in select community development projects by councils who are active members of the Community Managers Network Committee. This will assist in understanding what is needed to best support successful use of the tool by the wider sector.
The VSO project has been funded by the Local Government Association Research and Development Scheme along with financial contributions from Local Government Professionals Australia, SA Community Managers Network, City of Onkaparinga, City of Charles Sturt, City of Salisbury and City of Port Adelaide Enfield.
The VSO Steering Group is comprised of members from the above organisations, other interested councils and the Social Impact Measurement Network of Australia (SIMNA – SA Chapter). In October 2017 the group developed the current Project Plan informed by the AITI research report and various stakeholder engagements across the local government sector and beyond. The plan can be downloaded from the top right of this page.