The GB rail industry has robust means to measure the economic value of rail, however, social sustainability still relies largely on narrative explanations and limited metrics. While there has been much progress on understanding and targeting the social value of rail projects, the absence of a robust methodology and baseline to measure, monitor, and evaluate social impacts has resulted in inconsistencies across industry and little trust in existing metrics. This has made it challenging to assess the social return on investment (SROI) of different options when planning and delivering changes to the railway. The principles of sustainability are becoming increasingly embedded within industry. As such, there is an increasing need to consistently and proportionally measure and monitor social impacts across the rail system. This project has developed a common framework, which has built upon existing research, to reduce the risk of duplication and be applicable across the whole life of franchises, projects, and programmes, as well as being scalable and useable across the GB rail industry. The project outputs have provided industry with greater consistency and quality assurance in measuring social value, and support progress made in embedding the Rail Sustainable Development Principles. Consequently, Network Rail has started developing a tool based on this framework.
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