Any political party serious about governing needs to put social value “front and centre”, the policy’s architect has said.

Chris White, the former Conservative MP whose private member’s bill became the Public Services (Social Value) Act, said the law’s impact had been “exclusively positive” and that government was becoming increasingly aware there was an appetite for it.

Speaking at the eWorld procurement conference in London, White said: “When the dust has settled after this party conference season, and when we come to the next general election – albeit I hope not imminently – any party serious about governing this country will include social value front and centre in their manifesto.”

White, who is now the director of the Institute for Industrial Strategy at King’s College London, said the Act had “come a long way” since it was passed into law.

Describing the progression of the law, White said in order to pass the initial bill, its wording was “the lightest touch”, stating only that procurement authorities needed to “consider” social value. “This light touch bill has become a very significant piece of legislation,” he said.

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