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Flood Resilience Strategy for Scotland Engagement report

Last year ECCI residents Sniffer collaborated with the Scottish Flood Forum and ClimateXchange to engage with a diverse range of stakeholders about the forthcoming Flood Resilience Strategy.

Sniffer has now published a report on the engagement process, what the findings of it were, and how these will be used going forward for the strategy. 

A new flooding strategy for Scotland

Scotland’s Programme for Government 2022 set out the aim to consult on a new flooding strategy for Scotland, including how we can build community flood resilience and engage a broader range of delivery partners to deliver more diverse flood management actions faster.

The Scottish Government is committed to producing Scotland’s first Flood Resilience Strategy in 2024. The purpose of the Strategy is to change our approach from ‘fixing flooding problems’ to creating flood resilient places; to lay out the principles to improve flood resilience, and to set out strategic changes that are needed.

To support the development of the Strategy, Sniffer was commissioned to engage with a diverse range of stakeholders during 2023, working collaboratively with the Scottish Flood Forum and ClimateXChange.

The report sets out our approach to stakeholder engagement activities during 2023, Sniffer's findings and what happens next.


Sniffer's findings reflect the fact that their engagement with communities attracted many people who have been flooded, are fearful of being flooded or concerned about local flooding schemes.

They found that a creative approach to thinking about the future (2045) rather than addressing today’s problems was helpful.

Nonetheless the issues faced by many communities are significant and those who are most likely to be impacted face stark realities with implications being not only physical and economic but affecting health and wellbeing.

Those who took part said they welcomed the opportunity for dialogue, with communities and practitioners coming together in a safe space. The research team experienced constructive conversations and a desire for greater interaction.

Such engagement at a national and local level could form a valuable element of the Flood Resilience Strategy, increasing shared understanding and trust.

Introducing ways for communities to talk about their lived experiences as part of the broader evidence base is beneficial in achieving greater flooding and climate resilience.

The Sniffer team noted that many agencies acknowledge the challenges of joined up policy and delivery, and the expectations placed on them, particularly in relation to land management and use and the role of the planning system and resourcing.

Many of the enablers of change the research team identified relate to improved mechanisms for working together, as well as the need to think differently about funding mechanisms.

Sniffer found a high expectation of what this Flood Resilience Strategy can achieve, and a desire to be kept involved with honest conversations, particularly around relocation.

There is much opportunity for the Flood Resilience Strategy to be brave in how it addresses these challenges.

What happens next

  • These outputs from the workshops are helping Scottish Government draft the Flood Resilience Strategy.
  • The public consultation on the Flood Resilience Strategy will take place in Spring 2024 and will run for 12 weeks.
  • A summary of the consultation responses will be published in summer.
  • The Flood Resilience Strategy is scheduled for publication in Autumn 2024.

Flood Resilience Strategy for Scotland Engagement report