Blog Type, Fellowship Blog, Fellowship Type, Single Company Fellowship | February 2012
Dan Rogerson MP Fellowship with FCC Environment
My Fellowship with the Industry in Parliament Trust began shortly after my election to the Commons. The scheme is invaluable and ought to be seen as a must for MPs like me who had always worked in the public sector prior to my election.
After becoming an MP, I joined the Liberal Democrats’ frontbench team in the Commons, as a Shadow Minister covering DEFRA. As I was covering debates to do with similar issues, it was recommended that I be placed with a company in the waste sector, and I was subsequently partnered with FCC Environment. I then moved on to other shadow portfolios including culture and local government, but have always maintained an interest in the sector, through my work on the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee and as Co-Chair of the Associate Parliamentary Sustainable Resource Group. This has allowed me to continue to look at the challenges and opportunities facing the waste industry.
A Fellowship is meant to take place over a period of eighteen months, but it took around six years to complete mine! The birth of my second son, Jago, and later daughter, Elowen, meant that days at the end of the week that had been set aside for my Fellowship were instead spent working in the constituency in Cornwall so that I wasn’t away from home in the evenings as much. As we neared the General Election of May 2010 all spare time was spent campaigning in the constituency, but after my re-election I was eager to go back and catch up with all the developments at FCC Environment.
The advantage of completing the Fellowship over a number of years, rather than a number of months, was that I got a greater understanding of how changes in the market place, and in government regulations, affected the business. I also got to spend time with both Jim Meredith and his successor as Chief Executive of FCC, Paul Taylor, to see their visions for the company and their responses to the challenges it faces.
During my Fellowship, I got to understand the important areas of work in any business - such as company secretary and the IT and finance departments - how companies interact with marketplaces and how FCC Environment works with its parent company, based in Spain. More specifically for this sector, I had the opportunity to get involved in most aspects of the company’s work, joining staff on everything from bin collection rounds to landfill sites, and from sorting recyclable materials to dealing with local authorities who often manage waste contracts.
Although I’m sure I still have much to learn, my experience with the IPT has hugely deepened my understanding of the private sector and how industry works with, and reacts to, the public sector and government regulations. I now look at both primary and secondary legislation in a different light. In my role as constituency MP in North Cornwall, I have been able to take a different perspective when dealing with the local council and in discussing with constituents what services they would like to see and how they can be provided.
Dan Rogerson MP
Interested in hosting an MP or Peer for a day as part of an IPT Fellowship? We are always looking for new host organisations from across all of the UK. To find out more about how to get involved in an IPT Fellowship, please contact: