Sustainable Development Action Plan for Advantage West Midlands (SDAP)

Lead Organisation

Sustainability West Midlands
Project Manager: Simon Slater (formerly Chief Executive)


Sustainable development is a complex agenda, how can it be interpreted and practically applied by regional, public sector organizations? SWM set out to answer this question in the context of Advantage West Midlands (AWM). The aim of this was to help build the understanding, confidence, and capacity of regional organizations to practically integrate sustainable development into their strategic and operational processes.

The aim of this work was to take national good practice, in the form of the Sustainable Development Action Plans (SDAP) required to be produced and reported on annually by Government Departments to the Sustainable Development Commission, and adapt for regional public bodies such as AWM.

Results and achievements

    • AWM moved from the bottom to the top of the league table of corporate sustainability performance within the RDA network
    • The creation of a board champion for future generations to chair the new sustainability sub-committee of the board to measure the progress of the SDAP
    • Creation of small sustainability team of staff and co-located staff within AWM to drive ‘mainstreaming’
    • Using the opportunity to refresh the economic strategy to produce the UK’s first low carbon regional economic strategy
    • Internal environmental management system that led to operational savings from waste and energy efficiency measures
    • Sustainability criteria built into funding investments, business support, and land and property development. This included a new carbon reduction target and reporting measures
    • Developing a new sustainability standard for large sites, that was incorporated into Regional Planning Guidance
    • Tailored training and support for the board, staff and partners to help them deliver their role in the SDAP

Download the full case study

For further information or help, please contact the SWM team on 0121 237 5890 or