Scotland’s National Strategy for Economic Transformation towards a wellbeing economy is a good start

01 Mar 2022

Scottish Environment LINK welcomes the recognition of environmental objectives in Scotland’s National Strategy for Economic Transformation and looks forward to  more robust plans to deliver towards our nature positive, net zero targets as part of a Just Transition.

Today marks the publication of the long awaited new strategy for economic transformation, Delivering Economic Prosperity. On Friday we highlighted our hopes and expectations for the new strategy here.

Scottish Environment LINK’s Economics Group welcomes the Strategy’s  recognition that our economy is embedded in nature. We welcome the frequent references to the importance of Scotland’s natural environment, the need to engage meaningfully with communities, and the need to develop a nature-positive economy that invests in nature-based solutions. Nature and our climate are in crisis and a more sustainable economic path is vital to tackling these emergencies.  

However, to achieve this,  the Strategy must  follow through on how this will be delivered. Moving our focus from measuring GDP to other parameters much more in line with a prosperous Scotland is very welcome, although the main approaches championed in the strategy are about increasing productivity and growth.  Globally, the  incompatibility of continued growth in rich countries while remaining within environmental limits is being recognised.  The development of a circular economy, with a focus on material productivity, rather than labour productivity is crucial, to meet nature and climate goals.

With the Transform Our Economy alliance, we prepared Ten Points to judge the new strategy, endorsed by 40 academics. Applying these, this strategy starts well with its overall vision. Theapplication of many of the other tests indicates that more work is needed on, for example, having clear tests of decarbonisation and nature impacts for all investment programmes. LINK hopes that today’s launch is the start of a debate about these matters, with the Scottish Government  leading an inclusive national conversation, making the most of the environmental and social policy expertise in Scotland.

The strong high level ambition of the strategy must be carried through into its delivery and we will closely monitor the developments to ensure this happens. A representative from Scotland’s environment movement within the Scottish Government’s new Economic Leadership Group would be a key step towards maintaining the positive momentum.  

As a part of  a robust national debate this new National Strategy for Economic Transformation can help to shift the focus away from economic growth towards a well being economy with nature and climate recovery at its heart. We look forward to seeing more detail on how this vision will be achieved and we look forward to the national conversation required to make this strategy succeed.

Contact details

Finlay Wilson, Communications Officer, Scottish Environment LINK

Tel contact: 07934033548 |   Email

Bruce Wilson, Deputy convenor LINK Economics Group 



Editors’ Notes

(1)  The Scottish Government’s new national strategy for economic transformation, Delivering Prosperity, can be found here

(2)  European Environment Agency paper on limits of growth within environmental limits here

(3)  For more information on why we need a circular economy see here

(2) The statement with Ten Key Points for a Transformative Economic Strategy can be read here

(3) Concerns raised by the Transform Our Economy alliance about engagement in the process of preparing the strategy can be read in this blog

(4)  Scottish Environment LINK is the forum for Scotland’s voluntary environment community, with over 35 member bodies representing a broad spectrum of environmental interests with the common goal of contributing to a more environmentally sustainable society



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