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New report: Learning about Land

Isabella Coin

Using land for the common good requires clear pathways to training and employment. People who want to work for land-based social enterprises have varied but fragmented options when it comes to gaining the skills they need and putting them to good use. Read our report, Learning about Land: Skills, training and employment for land-based social enterprises to find out more.

Which skills are needed?

We found that land-based social enterprises require a wide variety of skills in order to thrive. As well as land-based skills, successful land-based social entrepreneurs need business and strategic skills. They also need good people skills, and they need to be effective leaders and managers.

How do people go about gaining these skills?

Current training provision is extremely varied and just as fragmented. People interested in working in the sector may gain  knowledge and skills through volunteer training, apprenticeships, starter projects or traditional land-based colleges. Afterwards, they may go on to work in other land-based social enterprises as employees, start their own project, or get involved in related sectors such as landscape management, community development or education.

Issues with skills and employment

Unfortunately, current training and employment pathways often fail to meet the needs of current or prospective land-based social entrepreneurs. Reasons for this are varied. Land-based work is not generally aspired to or well-paid. It can be tricky to access training for the skills needed by land-based enterprises: specific training is often unavailable or unaffordable. Additionally, for those who complete this training, it is not clear how to progress into the world of work afterwards.

Moving forward: creating effective land-based skills pathways

Our report sets out four key strategies for creating fairer, more harmonised skills pathways for the land-based social enterprise sector:

  • Supporting land-based social enterprises to integrate training in their business models
  • Developing government policy that supports land-based careers
  • Creating coherent training and employment pathways within the land-based sector
  • Making land-based careers something to aspire to

Shared Assets is working hard to make a start on these solutions. We will:

  • Use our connections to identify and share best practice in training
  • Seek collaborators and funding to develop new models of training common good land users
  • Continue delivering training to land-based groups on governance, business models, group dynamics and other key areas
  • Work with practitioners and policymakers to advocate for better policy for land-based social enterprises
  • Support land-based social enterprises to develop training as part of their business models

Our report will be useful to current and aspiring land-based entrepreneurs, people designing land-based training and anyone who has an interest in supporting them. Read the full briefing, and be sure to check out our other report: Training for Common Good Land Use.

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