Professor of Social Justice and Innovation at St Mary's University, Twickenham Prof Francis Davis has been appointed by the Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, Penny Morduant MP, to increase the use of social enterprise as a way to improve employment opportunities for disabled people.
Professor Davis has agreed to work with the Office for Disability Issues and the Work and Health Unit on progressing the commitment made in Improving Lives: The Work, Health and Disability Green Paper for the public sector to lead by example and explore how public procurement can deliver wider objectives as well as value for money.
Francis Davis said, “From local British communities to exports and international development, disabled people and their carers have skills, aspirations and potential to build ventures, work for firms of all shapes and sizes and address pressing needs through the social and public innovations they invent and co-create, and the technology and enterprises they devise and launch.
“I look forward to working with the Office of Disability Issues and others in the public, private and social enterprise sectors to explore and enhance opportunities.”
The key aims for Professor Davis’ work will be to explore:
- Sustainable, local programmes to create jobs for disabled people
- More support for disabled entrepreneurs
- More investment in social enterprise linked to jobs for disabled people
Christopher Hull, Head of the School of Management and Social Sciences at St Mary’s, added, “We’re delighted to be able to formally announce Francis’ work in this area. His absolute commitment to increasing opportunities for disabled people will undoubtedly inspire our academic team and at St Mary’s and of course our students – many of whom have a keen interest in social enterprise.”
A graduate of Warwick Business School, London (SOAS), Durham and Southampton Universities, Prof Francis Davis is an international authority on social justice, enterprise and public innovations research, innovation, and leadership.