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Wales' Future Generations Commissioner helps public bodies think long-term

Updated: Oct 4, 2022

In 2015, the Welsh Government introduced its groundbreaking Wellbeing of Future Generations Act which requires public bodies to think about the long-term impact of their decisions, to work better with people, communities and each other, and to prevent persistent problems such as poverty, health inequalities and climate change.

The Future Generations Act defines Sustainable Development in Wales as: “The process of improving the economic, social, environmental and cultural wellbeing of Wales by taking action, in accordance with the sustainable development principle, aimed at achieving the wellbeing goals.” It sets out seven wellbeing goals as well as five ways of working needed for Public Bodies to achieve the goals. The Act makes it clear the listed public bodies must work to achieve all of the goals, not just one or two.

Seven goals: a prosperous Wales, a resilient Wales, a more equal Wales, a healthier Wales, a Wales of cohesive communities, a Wales of vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language, a globally responsible Wales
Seven Wellbeing Goals set out in the Future Generations Act Wales

In 2016, Sophie Howe was appointed as Wales' Future Generations Commissioner. Since then she has secured fundamental changes to land use planning policy, major transport schemes and Government policy on housing - ensuring that decisions taken today are fit for the future.

The Act requires two 5-yearly reports, one from the Future Generations Commissioner for Wales and other from the Auditor General for Wales (AGW). Together they give a periodic stock-take of the implementation of the Act. Find out more on the Future Generations Commisssioner's website or watch her talk below.


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