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Transport is the lifeblood of a vibrant economy and an inclusive society.

The Collaborative society that is SCOTS brings together an exceptional range of people who recognise what that statement means in practice.

The professionalism, knowledge, skills and dedication of our members makes a major contribution to economic, social and health priorities across Scotland through development and coordination of roads and transportation policy, promotion of managerial and technical excellence and the sharing of knowledge.

At a glance

The Scottish Collaboration of Transportation Specialists (SCOTS) is a strategic collaborative body representing Scotland’s 32 local authorities and seven regional transport partnerships. Playing a pivotal role in the design, delivery and maintenance of the nations transport systems, SCOTS contributes to innovation and performance improvement across the network.

We do this through:

  • Influencing transportation policy
  • Developing professionals through training, research, and best practice
  • Enhancing and protecting the built and natural environments
  • Improving safety through innovation and design
  • Identifying ways to move people and goods more sustainably
  • Looking after the nations transport assets

Our New Approach

We are in the process of refreshing and modernising our approach to how we ensure the greatest level of collaborative opportunity across our membership. Our long standing approach since 1996 had become too reliant on a pool of Chief Officers who have reduced in number as functional remits have been combined within local authorities.

But the challenges around all things transportation have remained and so we are now broadening our membership model to allow the collaboration to benefit from the breadth and depth of ability in all of our member authorities and partnerships.

Collaborative Leadership

As a collaborative society of specialists on transportation we are linked to multiple parts of society across the public and private sector. Since 1996 we have been seen as a go to organisation to seek advice, support and leadership and those roles are core to what we will continue to do.

We will therefore continue to operate with a Chair and 3 Vice Chairs supported by an Executive Board which are all linked into our Thematic Working Groups.  The work undertaken by each of these individuals and groups is of course done on a voluntary basis. The support of each of the Local Authorities and Regional Transport Partnerships in allowing this collaborative approach is crucial.

The collective capabilities of SCOTS shines through in number of successful collaborative programmes covering technical, training and strategic areas of work.  For example, our Road Asset Management Programme is an exemplar in the field and has operated across the 32 Scottish Roads Authorities since 2004. We have also provided significant strategic input to the 2019 National Transport Strategy, are part of the NTS Ministerial Board and have helped draft multiple pieces of legislation and statutory guidance.

Perhaps the most telling testament to the work we have done and what we can do in the future is that more than one partner has commented that if SCOTS didn’t exist then we would have to create it.