North West Together We Can commissioned ippr north to identify the critical success factors for social and community enterprises and inform the wider debate.

The 'Big Society' is emerging as an important early theme for the Coalition government. The new regional strategy currently being developed for the North West makes social enterprise a priority.

The report draws together the results of case study research, a survey of social and community enterprises in the North West, a small number of interviews with support providers and local authorities and a cross-sector workshop.