Cyrenians CEO joins Economic Delivery Board

24 May 2022
Ewan Aitken

Experienced leaders from business, academia, third sector and trade unions have been appointed to the new delivery board promised in the National Economic Strategy to deliver Scotland’s long term economic ambitions.

The National Strategy for Economic Transformation Delivery Board will be co-chaired by Economy Secretary Kate Forbes and Barry White who has held senior leadership roles in the private and public sectors including as a former Chief Executive of the Scottish Futures Trust. 

The board, and its 12 members, replaces the Enterprise and Skills Strategic Board, with an enhanced remit to hold all partners to account for delivery of the commitments in the National Strategy. It will focus on delivery of the five key priority programmes that have been identified as having the greatest potential to deliver economic growth. These are stimulating entrepreneurship, opening new markets, increasing productivity, developing the skills we need for the decade ahead and ensuring fairer and more equal economic opportunities.

Ms Forbes said:

“When I launched the National Strategy for Economic Transformation, I promised an enhanced and ruthless focus on delivery. The Delivery Board ensures greater accountability, more streamlined activity and a renewed drive to delivery Scotland’s economic ambitions as we recover from the Covid pandemic, and secure a just transition to a net zero economy.

“This is a board of experienced leaders, appointed because of their professional experience in delivering results across the public, private and third sectors. They will bring their vast knowledge, credibility and connections across the business community and expertise in delivering major initiatives to help shape the vital changes required to help transform our economy.

“I look forward to working alongside all board members and delivery partners to make the Scottish economy more prosperous, more productive and more internationally competitive by 2032.”

Mr White said:

“I am delighted to co-chair the newly formed board. The board will play a prominent role in creating a new culture of delivery and accountability where the responsibilities for the delivery of the National Strategy for Economic Transformation will be clearly allocated and accepted by delivery partners.

“In its work the board must always remember that companies, workers, and entrepreneurs have a choice where they locate and invest. To grow the economy, to achieve net zero and to improve opportunities we need them to want to choose Scotland.”

Ewan Aitken CEO of Cyrenians said:

"I am delighted to have been asked to join the NSET Delivery Board. It is a challenging time, but I am gratified to see that the Third Sector are being included in bodies such as these when we know the effect of any implementation of this strategy needs to ensure the most vulnerable amongst our communities are supported to flourish. I am committed to ensuring that people remain at the heart of our decision making."

National Strategy for Economic Transformation Delivery Board members

  • Douglas Millican - CEO of Scottish Water
  • Sir Simon Lister - Chief Operating Officer of BAE Systems
  • Ellis Watson - Chair of DC Thomson
  • Gillian Docherty - Chief Commercial Officer of University of Strathclyde.
  • Nora Senior - Executive Chair UK Regions/Ireland of Weber Shandwick
  • Roz Foyer - General Secretary of Scottish Trade Union Congress
  • Ewan Aitken - Chief Executive of Cyrenians
  • Audrey Cumberford - Principal and Chief Executive of Edinburgh College
  • Colette Cohen - CEO of The Net Zero Technology Centre
  • Jamie McGowan - Managing Director of Essence of Harris
  • Uzma Khan - Director of Strategic Planning and Deputy Chief Operating Officer of University of Glasgow

The National Strategy for Economic Transformation included an action to restructure the Enterprise and Skills Strategic Board so that it becomes the National Strategy for Economic Transformation Delivery Board.

 Read Scotland's National Strategy for Economic Transformation on the Scottish Government website.”