A Time for Hope – Our December newsletter is here

A very Merry Christmas and a happy New Year from all of us here at Diffley Partnership! 


It’s that time of year again, when we inevitably find ourselves looking back on the previous 12 months, and planning for what the next year will hold. The last few weeks of December are traditionally hectic and we increasingly think about our priorities and ambitions for the year ahead. Our recent work, some of which we talk about in this edition of our newsletter, helps us both reflect on 2023, and give us some optimism for 2024.


The findings of our quarterly survey, Understanding Business – which measures the forecast, perceptions, and challenges for business – certainly suggest that we can be somewhat hopeful for 2024. While businesses continue to face recruitment challenges, concerns about inflation rates and taxation are falling, and the number of Scottish businesses predicting a better year ahead increased over the last quarter of 2023. You can read more in our full report here. 


Elsewhere, our findings point to intentions to change for the better in the new year. Our work on behalf of Tandem Bank about people’s attitudes towards climate change and intentions to reduce their environmental impact points to opportunities along the path to net zero: survey results indicate that people in Britain want to ‘go green’ – but, over the past year, their ambition was not matched by behaviour changes. Still, there is cause for hope: going forward, the report’s insights into the barriers consumers face in making ‘greener’ changes can help businesses to support consumers in translating their intent into action. Read more here. 


Our work on behalf of Keep Scotland Beautiful left us feeling hopeful too. True, our report of the Scottish Litter Survey, published in November, made for gloomy reading: nine in ten people in Scotland believe that litter is a problem across the country, and almost two fifths believe that litter has become more common in their area in 2023.  


Yet December brought cause for optimism. Mark spoke at Keep Scotland Beautiful’s Local Environment Quality seminar, to discuss the Litter Survey’s findings (you can read more at this link). The seminar was attended by over 40 representatives of 26 organisations, all focused on taking action as part of the National Litter and Flytipping Strategy. The report helps us to understand the extent of the issue, and the appetite for change in the seminar’s audience suggests next year might herald some long-awaited improvements… 


In less than two weeks, it will be January 2024 – and our data suggests that we might look forward to it with hope… 

by haleybarnes