BIRMINGHAM ROUTE TO ZERO PROGRAMME
Client: Birmingham City Council (2021)
Inner Circle were commissioned to translate the UK’s second city’s carbon impact analysis into a portfolio of work that would deliver carbon savings from day one, while also putting in place the infrastructure and policies to achieve full decarbonization.
For city leaders trying to work out where to start and how to make progress at pace, this kind of task is often made more daunting by its scale as well as a backdrop of year-on-year staffing cuts as a result of strained public finances. A small team from Inner Circle worked in deep partnership with the city’s senior leadership and specialist council staff.
Part of our team led work on technical options appraisals and business cases for priority projects and programmes. The other part of the team performed the role of the Portfolio Director and Programme Office. As with all of our work we see those leadership roles as potentially transformational. In this case the task was to accelerate the delivery of priority projects whilst also finding ways to nudge the behavior of every service area so that it considered the climate emergency as core to its work.
We have created:
- A prioritized portfolio of practical, actionable projects – this was developed through our work on a portfolio-level business plan and series of project-level business cases.
- A new team and new management structure.
- Governance for city management of Route to Zero portfolio – and actively led the work programme in lieu of a recruitment and team building process. We also augmented the city-wide collaborative forum for citizens, enterprise, research bodies and anchor institutions.
- A culture of delivery, helping projects quickly transition from ideas to a practical set of actions, with monitoring and reporting for results.
- A pilot whole house retrofit delivery and financing programme, working in partnership with the City and Metro Mayor
- A series of future practical recommendations to shift the procurement and supply-chain management processes to a more creative commissioning model supporting ‘earth shots’.