The Scottish Government has included two senior ICE members in its new independent Infrastructure Commission for Scotland.
ICE Vice President Rachel Skinner, UK Head of Transport at WSP, and ICE Scotland Director Sara Thiam join eight other members on the board. Both women are on the board in an independent capacity.
The Commission, which will be chaired by former Scottish Power CEO Ian Russell CBE, aims to provide independent, informed advice on the vision and ambition for infrastructure in Scotland. It will prioritise investment that meets the country’s societal needs over the next 30 years.
An independent commission for Scotland to assess the country’s long-term infrastructure needs and investment priorities is something that ICE Scotland first called for in its 2016 Manifesto for Infrastructure.
ICE Scotland Chair Jim Young said: “ICE Scotland has long advocated for an independent Infrastructure Commission with long-term ambition, so we are delighted to have the opportunity to bring our members’ collective expertise to bear.
“Ensuring the Commission is transparent and evidence-led in its recommendations to ministers will be key to its success.”
Evidence from the Institution to the Commission will be overseen by ICE Fellow Belinda Oldfield.
Young added: “Infrastructure is a long-term investment, so retaining strategic direction through election cycles and potential changes in government is vital to ensuring Scotland has the infrastructure it needs for the future.”
The Commission will support the delivery of investment of an estimated £7bn over the next seven years, as part of the National Infrastructure Mission.
An ageing and growing population, climate change and technological change are just some of the factors that will be considered in the advice.
Who are the other members of the Commission?
The other members of the Commission are:
- Professor Iain Docherty, University of Glasgow
- Ken Gillespie, Homes for Scotland
- Benny Higgins, Commissioner
- Mary Pitcaithly OBE, Scottish Police Authority
- Grahame Smith, General Secretary, TUC
- John Trower, Optimity
- Professor Janette Webb, University of Edinburgh
After the Commission's first meeting last week, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Michael Matheson MSP, said: “Together the members bring a wide and balanced range of skills and insights.
"[The Commission] has a key role in advising Scottish Ministers on strategic investments to boost inclusive economic growth, improve services and support delivery of Scotland’s low carbon objectives.”
The Commission will report on infrastructure ambitions and priorities by the end of 2019, recommending delivery models by mid-2020. This includes the possible creation of a Scottish National Infrastructure Company.
To find out more about the Infrastructure Commission click here